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Statement of Commissioner Daniel B. Maffei on Lake Carriers’ Association petition and Section 19 Investigation


I commend the Commission’s unanimous action to accept the petition of the Lake Carriers Association and initiate an investigation into the ballast water regulations proposed by the Government of Canada.

As a native of the Great Lakes region, I understand the need to protect the ecosystems in the lakes from invasive species and how important it is that we have a good relationship with our Canadian friends.

That said, I also know the importance of the U.S. lake carriers to the region’s economy and the country as a whole. Ensuring the U.S. lakers are on even footing with their Canadian counterparts is vital.

If there is a chance the Government of Canada is using the International Maritime Organization ballast water regime as an excuse to treat U.S. flagged vessels unfairly, the Commission must investigate. If we find the petition has merit, we must not allow even our greatest trading partner to greenwash unfair protectionism.

Daniel B. Maffei is a Commissioner with the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission. The thoughts and comments expressed here are his own and do not represent the position of the Commission.