Ferries 101: Economics, Security and Governance

Go Lean Commentary

The absolute best way to get from Point A to Point B is a straight line. If those two points are separated by water then the best way is a causeway or a bridge.

That is the ideal. Then there is island life, where we have to accept the Less Than ideal. Many times the best way to get from Point A to Point B across a body of water is a boat, or more specifically a Ferry.

CU Blog - Ferries - Economics, Security and Governance - Photo 0Welcome to a discussion of “Ferries 101”. Also, welcome to British Colombia, Canada. They provide the Caribbean such good role models and lessons of how to facilitate modern life with the realities of coastal and island living.

May we pay more than the usual attention to this Canadian model and these lessons.

The book Go Lean…Caribbean – available to download for free – proposed a plan to better unite the 30 Caribbean member-states – all islands and coastal territories – that incorporated a full deployment of a network of ferries. This would be so transformative for the Caribbean region that we had to study a successful deployment of such a scheme. The best role model was the Pacific North American coast – the Salish Sea; this is the intricate network of coastal waterways that includes the southwestern portion of the Canadian province of British Columbia (Vancouver) and the northwestern portion of the U.S. state of Washington (Seattle). Its major bodies of water are the Strait of Georgia, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and Puget Sound. This inland waterway features international borders, constant trade and travel to facilitate year-round tourism and commerce. (See VIDEO in the Appendix below).

Copying such a model is a Big Deal for the Caribbean – too big for any one member-state alone. The Go Lean book thusly serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the technocratic Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU), an inter-governmental entity for all 30 member-states. The purpose is to better facilitate the societal engines (economics, security & governance) of the region that would lead to the elevation of Caribbean society – for all member-states. The book states this vision emphatically with this quotation:

The CU envisions a similar – [to North America’s Salish Sea] – water-based highway system of ferries and docks to facilitate passenger, cargo and vehicle travel connecting the islands of the Caribbean region to the mainland ports. This ferry system will be a component of the Union Atlantic Turnpike. – Page 280.
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This CU/Go Lean roadmap has these 3 prime directives:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy to $800 Billion and create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to ensure public safety and protect the homeland; and the seas.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines, including a separation-of-powers between the member-states and CU federal agencies.

The book stresses that reforming and transforming the Caribbean societal engines must be a regional pursuit. This was an early motivation for the roadmap, as pronounced in the opening Declaration of Interdependence (Pages 12 – 13):

xi. Whereas all men are entitled to the benefits of good governance in a free society, “new guards” must be enacted to dissuade the emergence of incompetence, corruption, nepotism and cronyism at the peril of the people’s best interest. The Federation must guarantee the executions of a social contract between government and the governed.

xvi. Whereas security of our homeland is inextricably linked to prosperity of the homeland, the economic and security interest of the region needs to be aligned under the same governance. Since economic crimes … can imperil the functioning of the wheels of commerce for all the citizenry, the accedence of this Federation must equip the security apparatus with the tools and techniques for predictive and proactive interdictions.

xxiv. Whereas a free market economy can be induced and spurred for continuous progress, the Federation must install the controls to better manage aspects of the economy: jobs, inflation, savings rate, investments and other economic principles. Thereby attracting direct foreign investment because of the stability and vibrancy of our economy.

The Go Lean book provides 370-pages of turn-by-turn instructions on “how” to adopt new community ethos, plus the strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to execute so as to reboot, reform and transform the societal engines of Caribbean society. The deployment of ferries is integral to the Go Lean roadmap for a “Union Atlantic Turnpike” – this is defined in the book as …

“a big initiative of the CU to logistically connect all CU member-states for easier transport of goods and passengers. The Turnpike is virtual … made up of many physical transportation modes envisioned for the region: Pipeline, Ferries, Highways, and Railroad”. – Page 205

Here is a sample of references to the ferry eco-system through-out the Go Lean book:

Community Ethos – Group Purchase organizations (GPO) – Big Ferry purchases Page 24
Strategy – Competitive Analysis – Buy foreign or buy local – Ferries could neutralize transportation challenges and high costs Page 51
Strategy – Stakeholders – Visitors – Snowbirds can bring RV’s on ferries Page 55
Strategy – Agents of Change – Technology – Industrial efficiencies for transportation options like “Fast Ferry” Page 57
Tactical – Separation of Powers – Department of Transportation – Turnpike Operations: Integrated Ferries Page 84
Tactical – Separation of Powers – Department of Transportation – Marine Administration to include Ferry Operations Page 84
Implementation – Ways to Develop a Pipeline Industry – “Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline” as an advanced ferry system for cargo Page 107
Implementation – Ways to Re-boot [Sample City] Freeport – Shipbuilding options to build/maintain ferries Page 112
Planning – 10 Big Ideas for the Caribbean – Ferries create Virtual “Turnpike” Operations Page 127
Planning – Ways to Improve Interstate Commerce – Ferries operate as transportation arteries Page 129
Planning – Ways to Improve Interstate Commerce – State License Plates Online Registration Access as Ferries allows cars to “island hop” Page 129
Planning – Lessons from New York City – Many transport options including ferries Page 137
Planning – Lessons from the American West – Railroads and Highways opened the West for better commerce, the same as ferries will do for the CU. Page 142
Planning – Lessons from Canada’s History – well-developed trade networks made for Advanced Economy. Page 146
Advocacy – Ways to Create Jobs – New Jobs for Infrastructural Build-out (Ferry docks) Page 152
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Housing – Pre-fab Industry/Jobs depend on Ferry deployment for logistics Page 161
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Public Works – Union Atlantic Turnpike requires Ferry Piers Page 175
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Homeland Security – Naval Authority: to ensure and protect the waterscapes and vessels of the region to mitigate against “bad actions and bad actors”. Page 180
Advocacy – Ways to Enhance Tourism – New Winter Season Product: Snowbirds can transport RV’s with Ferries Page 190
Advocacy – Ways to Enhance Tourism – Dynamic Sea-lifts: Consider Fast Ferries boats and Spring Break traffic Page 190
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Events – Sea lifts for Passengers and Freight Page 191
Advocacy – Ways to Promote Fairgrounds – Ferries can transport “real” fairs Page 192
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Extractions – Ferries Schedule for Transport to Offshore Rigs Page 195
Advocacy – Ways to Foster e-Commerce – Logistics & Delivery options improve Page 198
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Transportation – Islands and Coastal areas demand more seafaring options i.e. ferries Page 205
Advocacy – Ways to Develop Ship-Building – Ferry Operations – Fleet Demand & Supply Page 209
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Rural Living – Ferries can optimize rural transportation options Page 235
Advocacy – Ways to Impact US Territories – Puerto Rico could be Transportation Hub Page 244
Appendix – New Transportation Jobs: Building/maintaining/administering toll roads, electric lines, and ferries: 15,000 Page 257
Appendix – Model of Alaska Marine Highway – Facilitated by ferries Page 280
Appendix – Model of Eurotunnel – The Ferry Link Page 281

This Go Lean book projects the roll-out of this Union Atlantic Turnpike as Day One / Step One of the Go Lean/CU roadmap. Over the 5-year implementation more and more of the features of the Turnpike will be deployed and their effect on the region will be undeniable: they will help to make the Caribbean a better place to live, work and play.

This Go Lean roadmap seeks to foster best-practices in the administration of a “ferry eco-system”. We will have a lot of coordinate – “many balls in the air”: shipbuilding, border protection, customs, events facilitation, trade and tourism promotion. These topics are just a sample of subjects previously addressed in many Go Lean commentaries; see a relevant list here:

http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=12304 Caribbean Festival of the Arts – Transport Options for Events
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=12146 Commerce of the Seas – Shipbuilding Model of Ingalls
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=12144 Commerce of the Seas – Book Review: ‘Sea Power’
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=12126 Commerce of the Seas – Stupidity of the Jones Act
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=9179 Snowbirds Tourism – First Day of Autumn – Time to Head South
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=9070 Securing the Homeland – From the Seas
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=6867 How to address high consumer prices: Welcoming ferries
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=3713 Lesson from Canada: NEXUS – Facilitating Detroit-Windsor Commerce
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=673 Future Tech – Autonomous cargo vessels without a crew

The subject of ferries could be strategic and tactical for the Caribbean. They can create new lines of business for our region and help to optimize existing economic activities. Traditionally, building roads and building bridges have always been good for society and good for a local economy. Building ferries should be even easier than building a road or building a bridge.

While national-building is heavy-lifting, the administration of ferries need not be. We have so many good examples and role models to consider. For example, this weekend (June 30 / July 1, 2007) is a Big Deal in North America; Canada is celebrating Canada Day on July 1 and the US is celebrating its 4th of July Holiday. We see an example of the best-practices of governance in the news article in the Appendix below. The experience shows how good governance works; due to mechanical problems the ferry operations in this one British Colombian island had to be suspended and a recovery plan executed: free reservations. That is sure to go a long way in forging goodwill among Western Canadian “ferry” stakeholders. This provides a good example for our Caribbean planners, who are observing-and-reporting on Canadian efficiencies. See photos here and the VIDEO in the Appendix below:

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Yes, Ferries 101 could exacerbate nation-building 101. These activities can have a positive impact on a nation’s economy, security and governance. The industry of ferries is just one of the basic functionalities that must be embraced for an Industrial Reboot; in fact, this can be catalogued as an Industrial Reboot 101. This commentary is 1 of 4 in an occasional series considering Industrial Reboots. The full series is as follows:

  1. Industrial Reboot – Ferries 101
  2. Industrial RebootPrisons 101
  3. Industrial RebootPipeline 101
  4. Industrial RebootFrozen Foods 101

Yes, we can … reboot our industrial landscape, for our waterways. Past generations of Caribbean people lived off the sea; it is now past-time to do that again. This plan – the roadmap to deploy a regional network of ferries – is conceivable, believable and achievable. We urge all Caribbean stakeholders to lean-in to this roadmap for economic empowerment. We can make the Caribbean homeland – with better interconnectivity between the islands and the “mainlands” – better places to live, work and play. 🙂

Download the free e-Book of Go Lean … Caribbean – now!

Sign the petition to lean-in for this roadmap for the Caribbean Union Trade Federation.


Appendix – News Article: Free B.C. Ferries reservations to help Mayne Island travellers
By: Louise Dickson

CU Blog - Ferries - Economics, Security and Governance - Photo 1bB.C. Ferries is offering free reservations on the Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay route for people travelling to Mayne Island in the next few days after hundreds of weekend travellers were caught in a massive traffic jam as they tried to leave the island on Sunday.

All sailings of Queen of Nanaimo between the Lower Mainland and the Gulf Islands were cancelled on Friday due to propeller problems. The Queen of Nanaimo, which has room for 160 cars and 900 passengers, is still out of service and won’t be operating until at least Thursday.

The smaller Salish Eagle, which holds 140 cars and 600 passengers, is running between Tsawwassen and Vancouver Island. B.C. Ferries is adding 12 sailing for the smaller ferry. The sailings will be on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

B.C. Ferries is working on getting Queen of Nanaimo back into service on Friday, in time for the long weekend, said corporation spokesman Darin Guenette.

If Queen of Nanaimo does not return to service, B.C. Ferries will put another ship on the route, if possible, he said.

The corporation is encouraging Lower Mainland customers to travel through Swartz Bay to the southern Gulf Islands. People interested in travelling through Swartz Bay to the southern Gulf Islands can contact the customer care centre at 1-888-223-3779.

Source: The Times-Colonist – Western Canada’s Oldest Daily Newspaper – Posted & Retrieved June 26, 2017 from: http://www.timescolonist.com/news/local/free-b-c-ferries-reservations-to-help-mayne-island-travellers-1.20780665


Appendix VIDEO – Passage ferry QUEEN OF NANAIMO, Tsawwassen – Sturdies Bay (BC Ferries) – https://youtu.be/4c0U6qq2238

Published on Jul 6, 2016 – BC Ferries (06/2016)

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