Canada Gazette, Part I, Volume 153, Number 6: Regulations Amending the Navigation Safety Regulations (Automatic Identification Systems)

February 9, 2019

Statutory authority

Canada Shipping Act, 2001

Sponsoring department

Department of Transport

REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT

(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)

Executive summary

Issues: As certain whale populations, including the Southern Resident Killer Whale and the North Atlantic Right Whale, remain critically endangered, there is a need for the Government of Canada to take additional measures to further protect and support the recovery of these endangered species. Further, as passengers on board commercial vessels put their trust in the operators to conduct the safest possible voyage, there is a need to improve marine safety, which has also been identified as a government priority.

Description: This regulatory proposal would amend the Navigation Safety Regulations to expand the Automatic Identification System (AIS) carriage requirements to a wider category of Canadian and non-Canadian passenger vessels.

Rationale: To support the protection and recovery of Southern Resident Killer Whales and other endangered species, such as the North Atlantic Right Whale, Transport Canada is proposing to amend the Navigation Safety Regulations to expand the Automatic Identification System carriage requirements to a wider category of passenger vessels.

As one of the threats to the Southern Resident Killer Whale is related to underwater disturbance from marine vessels (e.g. noise), which can have adverse effects on things such as foraging grounds, communication, and reproduction, the expansion of the carriage requirements of the Automatic Identification System will strengthen the surveillance and enforcement of current and future requirements respecting the disturbance of the whales by small vessels. Having access to Automatic Identification Systems data is critical, as it will inform future protection measures of this endangered species and the protection of other species.

The expansion of the Automatic Identification System requirements will also strengthen the surveillance and enforcement of current safety requirements that are themselves due to the presence of the North Atlantic Right Whale, and future requirements relating to endangered species.

Furthermore, an Automatic Identification System is an emerging technology that represents a significant step forward in enhancing the safety of passengers on board vessels by reducing the risk of collisions on water and improving the Government’s ability to respond to events and locate vessels in distress. The expansion of these carriage requirements will also further enhance navigation safety in terms of search and rescue efforts and collision avoidance.

Issues

Certain whale populations, including the Southern Resident Killer Whale and the North Atlantic Right Whale, remain critically endangered. Transport Canada, along with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Environment and Climate Change Canada, has committed to protecting Southern Resident Killer Whales and North Atlantic Right Whales. The preservation of these species relies on a variety of government initiatives (e.g. the Whales Initiative: Protecting the Southern Resident Killer Whale) operating together. Failure to implement the plans in a timely manner could increase the risk that more whales could die unnecessarily in the future.

As the plan is to have additional measures in place by the time the whales usually return to the Salish Sea in greater numbers in late spring 2019, these measures should be implemented before the migration begins. These measures include extending the existing Automatic Identification System requirements under the Navigation Safety Regulations, for which the enabling legislation is the Canada Shipping Act, 2001, to smaller commercial vessels. Having access to Automatic Identification Systems data is critical as it will inform future protection measures of endangered species, such as the Southern Resident Killer Whale.

There is also a pressing need for the Government to take additional measures given the continued threats facing Southern Resident Killer Whales, and the need to ensure that they can recover while Vancouver, British Columbia, continues to grow as a trade corridor to Asian markets.

In addition to the protection of endangered whales, this proposal would enhance marine safety for persons travelling by passenger vessel. An Automatic Identification System is an emerging technology that represents a significant step forward in enhancing the safety of travellers by reducing the risk of collisions on water and improving the Government’s ability to respond to events and locate vessels in distress.

Background

Greater protection of the Southern Resident Killer Whale

The endangered Southern Resident Killer Whale is an iconic species with cultural significance for Indigenous peoples and coastal communities in British Columbia that faces significant threats to its survival and recovery. These threats relate to the lack of availability of prey (mainly Chinook salmon); acoustic (noise) and physical disturbance from marine vessels; and contaminants in the water.

On May 18, 2018, the Minister of Transport, the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, and the Minister of Environment and Climate Change (as the minister responsible for the Parks Canada Agency) assessed that Southern Resident Killer Whales are facing imminent threats to their survival and recovery due to low population numbers, poor condition, and lack of reproduction.

On June 22, 2018, the Whales Initiative was announced by the Minister of Transport and the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change. This $167.4 million initiative, under Budget 2018, will protect and support the recovery of the Southern Resident Killer Whale, the North Atlantic Right Whale, and the St. Lawrence Estuary Beluga Whale through comprehensive actions tailored to address the unique combinations of threats to their safety.

Specifically with regard to the Southern Resident Killer Whale, the announcement included immediate and comprehensive action to support their recovery by addressing the main threats they face. Key actions include, among other things, reducing disturbance from underwater vessel noise by imposing a new mandatory requirement for all marine vessels (including recreational boats) to stay at least 200 m away from killer whales, effective July 11, 2018, and developing the necessary tools to implement mandatory measures, where needed, to reduce noise from vessel traffic.

On October 31, 2018, the Minister of Transport and the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard announced a suite of additional bold measures focused on broadening and strengthening protection for the species. These measures include, among other things, the amendments that Transport Canada is proposing to make to the Navigation Safety Regulations to expand the carriage requirements for Automatic Identification Systems to a wider category of passenger vessels. An additional $61.5 million is being committed to implement the new measures.

What is an Automatic Identification System and what can it do?

An Automatic Identification System is a navigational tool that provides information such as the ship’s identity, type, position, and speed, as well as other safety-related information. An Automatic Identification System transmits and receives data from vessels and from shore over very high radio frequencies. When carried on board vessels, an Automatic Identification System can enhance situational awareness and provide useful information for search and rescue responders.

There are two types of Automatic Identification Systems: a Class A system and a Class B system. A Class A system is shipborne equipment designed to meet the performance standards and carriage requirements adopted by the International Maritime Organization, whereas a Class B system is shipborne equipment that is interoperable with all other Automatic Identification System stations, but does not meet all the performance standards adopted by the International Maritime Organization. A Class B Automatic Identification System essentially transmits less information, less often and at a lower power.

This system can also assist in the collection of aggregate data relating to the cumulative impacts of vessel disturbances on endangered marine mammals and critical habitats. The data will enhance Transport Canada’s ability to monitor marine traffic in sensitive areas for endangered whale species, including detecting a wider category of vessels that are not complying with speed restrictions in mandatory or voluntary slowdown zones. It will provide information that would result in a better ability to model and assess conservation measures for these species.

Current regulatory regime

Under the current regulatory regime, the following vessels must be fitted with a Class A Automatic Identification System on board: (i) larger domestic vessels of 500 gross tonnage or more; (ii) vessels that are 150 gross tonnage or more that are carrying more than 12 passengers and engaged on an international voyage; and (iii) vessels, other than a fishing vessel, that are 300 gross tonnage or more that are engaged on an international voyage.

Greater protection of the North Atlantic Right Whale

Vessel strikes are a major concern for the endangered North Atlantic Right Whale and are a navigational safety concern. Between June and September 2017, 12 North Atlantic Right Whales died in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, with four of these deaths showing signs of blunt force trauma consistent with vessel strikes. In response, Transport Canada introduced speed restrictions in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Vessels that were 20 m or longer in length were limited to a maximum speed of 10 knots when travelling in this area. This was a temporary seasonal restriction put in place from April 28, 2018, until November 15, 2018.

Further, Fisheries and Oceans Canada temporarily closed several fishing areas in New Brunswick and Quebec, in efforts to protect the North Atlantic Right Whale from vessel strikes.

The proposed extended Automatic Identification System requirements would help in detecting a wider category of vessels that are not complying with the speed restrictions in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. While this is being done to contribute to navigational safety, it has the secondary effect of protecting the North Atlantic Right Whale.

Enhancing marine safety

Passengers on board commercial vessels of various ages, mobility, and international backgrounds are generally unfamiliar with the safety of ships or water conditions, and have a high expectation that they will be safe. Therefore, the trust factor placed on the owner-operator of these passenger vessels is relatively high. Many operators use Transport Canada certification as a signal to the travelling public that they meet all safety requirements.

The expanded Automatic Identification System requirements would enhance marine safety in terms of search and rescue efforts and collision avoidance for a substantial portion of the fleet of passenger vessels, with the exception of a few smaller passenger vessels.

This regulatory initiative aligns with the instructions in the Minister of Transport mandate letter commitment to work with the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, and the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to improve marine safety.

Objectives

The objectives of this regulatory initiative are to

  1. support the protection and recovery of Southern Resident Killer Whales and other endangered species, such as the North Atlantic Right Whale; and
  2. further enhance navigation safety in terms of search and rescue efforts and collision avoidance.

Description

This regulatory proposal would amend the Navigation Safety Regulations to expand the Automatic Identification System carriage requirements to a wider category of Canadian and non-Canadian passenger vessels that are navigating in Canadian waters.

Specifically, section 65 of the Navigation Safety Regulations would be amended to extend Automatic Identification System Class A or Class B carriage requirements to vessels that are certified to carry more than 12 passengers or to vessels that are eight metres or more in length and are certified to carry passengers. The owners of these vessels would have a choice of installing a Class A or Class B Automatic Identification System.

Passenger vessels that are operating in sheltered waters footnote 1 would be excluded from this carriage requirement because sheltered waters voyages are found to be low risk. Therefore, vessels that operate only on sheltered waters voyages may be subject to reduced safety requirements due to this low-risk operating environment.

In addition, in the proposed regulatory amendments, the use of the terms “ship” and “tons” would be replaced with “vessel” and “gross tonnage” to be consistent with the defined terms in the Canada Shipping Act, 2001. Also, the definition of a “sheltered waters voyage,” as per the new subsection 65(10) of the amended Regulations, would be the definition as it currently appears in the Vessel Certificates Regulations.

Regulatory development

Consultations

Affected stakeholders include owners of commercial vessels registered in Canada as passenger vessels or ferries, if their vessels are certified to carry more than 12 passengers or if their vessels are eight metres or more in length and are certified to carry passengers.

Other government departments that were consulted on this initiative are Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Canadian Coast Guard, and Environment and Climate Change Canada. All three departments are supportive of the proposed amendments.

Consultations on a separate regulatory proposal to introduce new Navigation Safety Regulations have been led through the regional and national Canadian Marine Advisory Council meetings since 2007. The consultations included, among other things, the proposal to expand the Automatic Identification System carriage requirements to passenger vessels carrying more than 50 passengers. Stakeholder reaction regarding this threshold has been positive.

These consultations did not include the proposal to expand the Automatic Identification System carriage requirements to a wider category of passenger vessels as proposed above; however, some stakeholders are aware that this initiative is forthcoming as it was linked to the recent government announcement of further actions to help protect the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whale (which indicated that actions to be taken would include the expansion of Automatic Identification System carriage requirements to a wider category of passenger vessels).

During consultations leading up to the Whales Initiative, a key gap that was mentioned by multiple stakeholders (representatives from the shipping industry, Indigenous peoples, commercial fishers, the whale-watching industry, etc.) was the lack of Automatic Identification Systems on all vessels, specifically commercial whale-watching vessels. Following the finding of an imminent threat, Transport Canada began to look at additional measures that could further supplement the Whales Initiative measures announced in June 2018. This led to a specific focus on vessel traffic from smaller vessels as a result of their impact or presence in key foraging areas, and the consideration of expanding Automatic Identification System carriage requirements to small passenger vessels.

The idea was presented on November 1, 2018, to the Indigenous and Multistakeholder Advisory Group, established to help inform measures related to the Southern Resident Killer Whale and led by Fisheries and Oceans Canada. This Advisory Group includes representatives from the shipping industry, Indigenous peoples, sport and recreational fishers, commercial fishers, BC Ferries, the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, the whale-watching industry (through the Pacific Whale Watch Association), environmental groups (including the World Wildlife Fund, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Georgia Strait Alliance and the David Suzuki Foundation), and the Vancouver Aquarium. Overall, there was a positive response to the announcement that this proposal was being developed by all those present at the Indigenous and Multistakeholder Advisory Group.

Consultations on this regulatory initiative were also held face-to-face through the November 2018 national Canadian Marine Advisory Council meeting. Online consultations are also being led using Transport Canada’s Let’s Talk Transportation platform, which was launched on November 14, 2018. Outreach is targeting sector-specific associations most likely to be impacted, including Indigenous peoples. Affected stakeholders will also be notified of this initiative through the Canada Gazette, Part I, prepublication process and will have 15 days to comment.

Modern treaty obligations and Indigenous engagement and consultations

Consultations on this initiative were conducted with various stakeholders, including Indigenous peoples, over the past two years leading up to the development of the Whales Initiative. Indigenous peoples were also more recently consulted through the Indigenous and Multistakeholder Advisory Group and were generally supportive.

Consultations are also being led online using Transport Canada’s Let’s Talk Transportation platform. These consultations will also include Indigenous peoples.

Affected stakeholders, including Indigenous peoples, will be notified of this initiative through the Canada Gazette, Part I, prepublication process and will have 15 days to comment.

It is anticipated that this proposal will impact a very minimal number of Indigenous peoples.

Regulatory analysis

Benefits and costs

The benefits of the proposed amendments include an enhanced ability to monitor marine traffic in sensitive areas for endangered whale species. This would provide information that would result in a better ability to model and assess conservation measures, and a greater ability to enforce these measures. Since an Automatic Identification System is primarily a navigation aid that increases the situational awareness of vessel operators, the proposed amendments would also reduce the risk of loss of life or serious injury by reducing the risk of collisions and improving the ability of search and rescue teams to coordinate their responses with other vessels in the area. The benefits of the proposed amendments are discussed qualitatively.

The present value total cost of the proposed amendments is $4.85 million. footnote 2 Vessel owners would assume the costs of purchasing, installing and maintaining a Class B Automatic Identification System unit. They would also assume the costs of training staff to operate and interpret units with a display.

Affected vessels

In the Canadian Register of Vessels, there are about 1 355 vessels classified as Passenger, Ferry or Fishing/Passenger that are eight metres or more in length. Of those, 106 vessels are already equipped with an Automatic Identification System. Under the proposed Automatic Identification System carriage expansion, only vessels operating outside of sheltered waters would be required to install an Automatic Identification System. Based on the operating area of the vessels, it was estimated that the incremental number of vessels required to carry an Automatic Identification System in 2019 would be 941.

The expected average annual growth rate for this type of vessel is just under 2%. This estimate is based on the registration rate of passenger vessels and ferries in the Canadian Register of Vessels that are eight metres or more in length (between 2008 and 2017), and are expected to operate outside sheltered waters. It is assumed that the number of vessels with an Automatic Identification System and the number of vessels that would require an Automatic Identification System will grow at the same rate.

Based on this growth rate, it is expected that, on average, two new vessels that meet the criteria of the proposed amendments would install an Automatic Identification System per year, in the absence of the Regulations.

Under the proposed amendments, an average of 30 vessels that meet the criteria of the proposed amendments per year would be required to install an Automatic Identification System. The total inventory of passenger vessels and ferries that are eight metres or more in length is expected to increase by about 17 vessels per year. However, an additional 13 vessels per year, on average, would be required to replace retired vessels. Between 2019 and 2028, a total of 1 245 vessels would require an Automatic Identification System.

Benefits

Automatic Identification Systems are a global standard, developed in coordination with several nations and international agencies, including the United Nations International Maritime Organization and the International Telecommunication Union. Since they are primarily collision avoidance systems, Automatic Identification Systems were designed to function globally and on an autonomous, continuous, open and non-proprietary protocol. This means that real-time data is available to anyone with a very high frequency receiver.

The public would benefit by gaining important data on the activity of vessels that operate most intensively around the critical habitat of the endangered whale species. The availability of these data improves the ability of researchers and government agencies to assess conservation measures in place and to develop new evidence-based measures in the future.

Automatic Identification System data has already been used in several studies associated with the protection and recovery of endangered whales. More vessels carrying Automatic Identification Systems would provide a larger dataset that would benefit public and commercial stakeholders.

For conservation science and research, Automatic Identification System data has been used for at least three main types of applications: describing vessel activity, assessing conservation impacts, and monitoring compliance. footnote 3

1. Describing the current vessel activity

Describing the current vessel activity would give researchers studying Canadian waters a clearer picture of the risks marine traffic poses to endangered whale species.

In Canadian waters, Automatic Information System data was used to map cumulative underwater acoustic energy from shipping traffic in the Pacific Ocean around Vancouver Island. A study found that high noise levels in critical habitats for endangered resident killer whales exceed the limits of “good conservation status” under the European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive. footnote 4 Other studies used Automatic Identification System data to examine how vessel traffic interfered with North Atlantic Right Whales in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, off the coast of Massachusetts, United States, footnote 5 and how low-frequency noise correlated with ocean-based commercial shipping trends off the coast of southern California. footnote 6

Underwater noise reduction measures were enhanced to protect Southern Resident Killer Whales. Part of this initiative was to expand coverage of sound-measuring hydrophone networks to quantify ocean noise throughout the Southern Resident Killer Whale habitat range. This would be linked to Automatic Identification System vessel traffic data to develop a more detailed understanding of the factors contributing to underwater noise and how it affects the whales. footnote 7

2. Assessing or modelling potential environmental impacts

Automatic Identification System data would also provide information to support the definition of future marine protected and critical habitat areas, vessel operating restrictions, or other government departments in enforcing marine mammal protection measures.

Automatic Identification System data has been used to study the risks of humpback whales being struck by cruise ships off the coast of Alaska, footnote 8 as well as by cargo vessels transiting the Panama Canal. footnote 9 The latter study resulted in the International Maritime Organization adopting new speed control protocols around the Panama Canal in 2014.

3. Monitoring environmental compliance

Monitoring of environmental compliance would help enforce speed and proximity restrictions.

Studies using Automatic Identification System data to evaluate compliance with routing and speed rules put in place by the United States National Marine Fisheries Service to protect North Atlantic Right Whales found that a combination of mandatory speed controls and recommended routes off the coast of Florida and Georgia, United States, could reduce the probability of right whale mortality from vessel strikes in those waters by around 72%. footnote 10

Since the introduction of speed reduction zones in the western Gulf of St. Lawrence in 2017, the Canadian Coast Guard has used Automatic Identification System data to issue warnings to vessel operators to inform them that they are entering a reduced speed zone or operating area of a recent whale sighting. The expansion of Automatic Identification Systems carriage requirements would enable authorities to monitor a larger portion of the vessels operating in speed control zones, which would reduce the risk of vessel strikes and underwater noise disturbance.

Between April 28 and November 15, 2018, vessels were observed transiting the mandatory speed reduction zones in the Gulf of St. Lawrence 4 612 times. footnote 11 In 383 of these voyages, vessels were recorded travelling above the 10 knots limit. Of these 383 reported cases, three penalties were issued and 12 cases are under review.

Broader use of Automatic Identification Systems would assist the Coast Guard in monitoring vessels that operate around the critical habitat of endangered marine species and in identifying areas where whales might be disturbed by a concentration of vessels. This would help the enforcement of recent changes in rules for the mandatory minimum approach distance in critical habitat areas and areas where sightings of both Southern Resident Killer Whales and North Atlantic Right Whales were recently reported.

Reduced risk of loss of life or serious injuries

In addition to helping protect endangered whales, the proposed amendments would reduce the risk of serious injury or fatality at sea by improving the ability of Canadian Coast Guard Marine Communications and Traffic Services centres to respond to vessels in distress.

When a distress message is broadcast, a Class A or Class B Automatic Identification System would allow the Marine Communications and Traffic Services centre to verify the last-known location of the distressed vessel, as well as that of any Automatic Identification System-equipped vessels nearby. Rescue units would be deployed with greater precision, and a response could be coordinated with nearby vessels. This would result in a faster response and in less time spent in the water, which could save lives.

In the past three years, there have been two high-profile passenger vessel incidents that resulted in multiple fatalities where the inability of search and rescue units to precisely locate the distressed vessel may have contributed to the number of casualties.

On October 25, 2015, the Leviathan II, a passenger vessel with 27 people on board, capsized while on a whale-watching excursion off Plover Reefs, in Clayoquot Sound, British Columbia. The crew aboard the vessel were unable to issue a call for distress until a flare was fired 40 minutes after the incident. The ensuing search and rescue operation was hampered by a miscommunication relating to the vessel’s location. As a result, six people died, four people suffered serious injuries, and approximately 2 000 L of fuel leaked into the water. footnote 12

In April 2017, a commercial vessel measuring 9 m, the Catatonic, took on water and the vessel stern sank below the waterline near Tofino, British Columbia. The operator contacted the Canadian Coast Guard lifeboat station for assistance, giving the location as three nautical miles off Bartlett Island. Because the vessel had lost power, the operator was unable to provide an exact location, which was actually six nautical miles from Bartlett Island. Search and rescue did not locate the vessel until just over 1.5 hours after the initial distress call. Although all aboard were recovered, two people were reported as deceased. Prolonged cold water immersion and associated cold water shock lead to their drowning. footnote 13

Both of these vessels would be required to carry an Automatic Identification System pursuant to the proposed Regulations.

Expanded Automatic Identification System carriage requirements would also improve situational awareness for all vessels carrying an Automatic Identification System. It would make other vessels carrying an Automatic Identification System in their vicinity more visible, allowing for earlier course adjustments, which would reduce the risk of collisions or near collisions.

Between 2008 and 2017, there was a total of 98 collisions or near collisions involving passenger vessels or ferries, resulting in five injuries. footnote 14 As shown in Table 1, in nearly 89% of these incidents, there was no Automatic Identification System on board these vessels.

Table 1: Collisions and near collisions involving passenger vessels and ferries between 2008 and 2017

Incident Type

Total Occurrences

Occurrences Involving Vessels Without AISs

Occurrences Involving Vessels Carrying AISs

Injuries

Collisions

33

32

1 (3%)

5

Near collisions

65

55

10 (15%)

0

Without in-depth knowledge of each incident, it is difficult to determine whether an Automatic Identification System could have prevented a particular collision. However, Automatic Identification Systems are expected to make a difference in at least some of the cases that would occur in the future. It should be noted that, for vessels carrying Automatic Identification Systems, there are more avoided collisions (near collisions) than collisions, which suggests it makes a difference.

Damage from vessel collisions can be minimal or completely destroy the vessel. Aside from damage to the vessel, there could be casualties (injuries or fatalities) among the crew and passengers, and there could be damage to cargo. Severe collisions may result in the release of dangerous goods and pollutants, which could damage the environment. Collisions also result in lost operating revenue for the vessel owners, and lost time for passengers on board the vessels.

In addition to improving the safety of vessel operators and passengers, Automatic Identification System data can be instrumental in providing additional information for Transportation Safety Board of Canada and Transport Canada marine incident investigations in the event of an accident or incident. The data would be valuable for government and academic research.

Costs

Owners of vessels registered in Canada would incur an estimated present value total cost of $4.85 million (in 2017 dollars) for the period 2019–2028, using a discount rate of 7%, or an annualized cost of $690,000 per year. Table 2 provides a breakdown of cost by region, and the estimated number of vessels in scope in each region.

Table 2: Breakdown of estimated affected vessels and total costs by region (Affected vessels and costs over 2019–2028; present value is expressed in 2017 dollars, discounted to 2019 using a rate of 7%)

Region

Number of Affected Vessels

Present Value Total Cost
($ Millions)

Pacific

666

2.62

Prairie

2

0.01

Ontario

239

0.92

Quebec

94

0.34

Atlantic

244

0.96

Total

1 245

4.85

Automatic Identification Systems unit cost

Since a Class B Automatic Identification System costs less than a Class A system, it is assumed shipowners would comply with the regulations by installing a Class B Automatic Identification System on board their vessels. Units are commercially available from a variety of retailers. The estimated total cost to purchase and install a unit and train staff to operate it is $2,450. A breakdown of costs is presented in Table 3.

Table 3: Automatic Identification Systems unit costs

 

Assumed Cost
(2017 dollars)

Acquisition of AIS (transceiver, cables and antenna)

$1,650

Installation and set-to-work

$500

Training

$300

Total

$2,450

Acquisition, installation and training costs were adjusted from A Benefit-Cost Analysis for Automatic Identification System (AIS) on Canadian Domestic Vessels conducted by Weir Canada, Inc. Dollar values in 2009 are inflated to 2017 values using the Consumer Price Index.

Class B Automatic Identification Systems units are fairly low maintenance and require little training to operate. A Class B Automatic Identification System installation consists of a main unit and two antennas that may be combined. The equipment requires little to no preventive maintenance. Mariners are mostly expected to be instructed on their use through on-the-job training.

The expected life of a unit is around 10 years. To account for the cost of training new staff, replacing broken antennas and cables or replacing damaged units, each vessel is expected to incur an average annual cost of $300 footnote 15. This is an average cost; many vessel owners would incur near zero annual costs for several years if they have no staff turnover and take reasonable care of their equipment.

Cost-benefit statement

 

Base Year: 2019

Discount Rate: 7%

Price Year: $CAN 2017

Final Year: 2028

A. Quantified impacts

 

2019

2025

2028

Total (Present Value)

Annualized Average

Costs

Vessels owners
($, millions)

2.34

0.26

0.23

$4.85

$690,193

B. Qualitative benefits

  • Enhanced ability to monitor, assess and enforce measures related to the conservation of whales.
  • Reduced risk of loss of life or serious injury at sea by enhancing the ability of search and rescue to coordinate a response when vessels are in distress.

Sensitivity

A sensitivity analysis was conducted varying the number of affected vessels and the costs associated with Automatic Identification Systems units.

Special attention was taken to ensure that vessel count estimates are as accurate as possible, but it is impossible to know the precise operating area of every vessel in Canada.

Costs would vary between vessels, depending on the type of unit purchased and the ease of installation. For vessel owners that purchase simple units that are easily installed, the present value total cost, including annual maintenance and training, may be as low as $2,200 over 10 years. More sophisticated units that are more labour-intensive to install, and require more maintenance and training, would have a present value total cost of around $6,600 over 10 years. In the central scenario, the present value total cost for one vessel to install and maintain an Automatic Identification System is estimated to be $4,400 over 10 years.

As shown in Table 4, the impact of the proposed amendments remains low, even with an initial vessel count of 30% higher when the highest cost is assumed. For the proposed amendment to have a significant impact, the number of affected vessels would need to be 38% greater than the central estimate (1 539 affected vessels by 2028) and the highest cost estimate ($6,600 per unit) would need to be used.

Table 4: Sensitivity matrix for Automatic Identification Systems unit costs and vessel counts (Present value total cost over 2019–2028, expressed in 2017 dollars, discounted to 2019 using a rate of 7%)

 

Automatic Identification Systems
Unit Cost

Vessel Count
(Total by 2028)


Low
Initial — $908

Annual — $200


Central
Initial — $2,448

Annual — $300


High
Initial — $3,987

Annual — $400

Low (−30%) — 991 vessels

1.68

3.39

5.10

Central — 1 245 vessels

2.40

4.85

7.30

High (+30%) — 1 580 vessels

3.11

6.30

9.48

Small business lens

Around 95% of the affected vessel owners operate three vessels or fewer, and would likely be small businesses.

The proposed amendments are designed to control the incremental burden on small businesses. The requirements allow vessel owners the option of purchasing a Class A or Class B Automatic Identification System. Class B units are less costly and easier to install than Class A units. Costs would be lower for smaller businesses since they would require less staff training.

The proposed amendments affect only businesses with vessels certified to carry 12 passengers or more, or vessels that are eight metres or more in length and are certified to carry passengers. This would exempt many smaller businesses that may have difficulty complying with the regulations.

One-for-one rule

The proposed amendments would have no impact on administrative burden costs.

Regulatory cooperation and alignment

The more than 12 passenger threshold, associated with this regulatory proposal, would align with the definition of passenger ship from Part A, Regulation 2, of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974, which defines a passenger ship as a ship that carries more than 12 passengers.

The optional requirement to carry a Class B Automatic Identification System (as opposed to a Class A Automatic Identification System) also somewhat aligns with current United States regulatory requirements for certain vessels to be fitted with a Class B Automatic Identification System.

Strategic environmental assessment

In accordance with the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals, a preliminary scan concluded that a strategic environmental assessment is not required.

Gender-based analysis plus

No gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) impacts have been identified for this proposal.

Implementation, compliance and enforcement, and service standards

Implementation

If approved by the Governor in Council, the coming into force date of this regulatory amendment would be June 15, 2019.

Compliance and enforcement

Compliance and enforcement of these proposed requirements would be addressed nationally through annual inspections for passenger vessels that are certified to carry more than 12 passengers. Checking whether an Automatic Identification System is on board would be added to the annual inspection.

In the case of passenger vessels that are eight metres or more in length and carrying fewer than 13 passengers, compliance and enforcement will be addressed nationally through current risk-based inspections.

Contact

Elizabeth Werszko
Manager
Marine Safety and Security
Transport Canada
Place de Ville, Tower C, 10th Floor
330 Sparks Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0N5
Telephone: 613-993-9233
Fax: 613-993-8196
Email: elizabeth.werszko@tc.gc.ca

PROPOSED REGULATORY TEXT

Notice is given that the Governor in Council, pursuant to subsections 120(1) and 190(1) of the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 footnote a, proposes to make the annexed Regulations Amending the Navigation Safety Regulations (Automatic Identification Systems).

Interested persons may make representations concerning the proposed Regulations within 15 days after the date of publication of this notice. All such representations must cite the Canada Gazette, Part I, and the date of publication of this notice, and be addressed to Elizabeth Werszko, Manager, Marine Safety & Security, Transport Canada, Place de Ville, Tower C, 10th Floor, 330 Sparks Street, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N5 (tel.: 613-993-9233; fax: 613-993-8196; email: elizabeth.werszko@tc.gc.ca).

Ottawa, January 31, 2019

Jurica Čapkun
Assistant Clerk of the Privy Council

Regulations Amending the Navigation Safety Regulations (Automatic Identification Systems)

1 Section 65 of the Navigation Safety Regulations footnote 16 is replaced by the following:

65 (1) Every vessel of 150 gross tonnage or more that is carrying more than 12 passengers and engaged on an international voyage shall be fitted with an Automatic Identification System (AIS) Class A.

(2) Every vessel, other than a fishing vessel, of 300 gross tonnage or more that is engaged on an international voyage shall be fitted with an AIS Class A.

(3) Every vessel, other than a fishing vessel, of 500 gross tonnage or more that is not engaged on an international voyage shall be fitted with an AIS Class A.

(4) Every vessel, other than a vessel subject to subsections (1) to (3), that is engaged on a voyage other than a sheltered waters voyage shall be fitted with an AIS Class A that meets the standards specified at item 15 of Schedule 1 or an AIS Class B if

(5) The AIS shall

(6) The AIS Class A shall be operated taking into account the annex to IMO Resolution A.917(22), Guidelines for the Onboard Operational Use of Shipborne Automatic Identification Systems (AIS).

(7) The AIS Class B shall meet one of the following standards of the International Electrotechnical Commission:

(8) Every vessel fitted with an AIS shall maintain it in operation at all times.

(9) Subsections (5) and (8) do not apply

(10) For the purposes of subsection (4), sheltered waters voyage has the same meaning as in the Vessel Certificates Regulations.

(11) For the purposes of section 51 and paragraph 52(1)(a), an AIS Class B is not considered to be equipment referred to in this section.

2 The portion of item 15 of Schedule 1 to the Regulations in column 1 is replaced by the following:

Item

Column 1

Equipment

15

Automatic identification systems (AISs) Class A

3 These Regulations come into force on June 15, 2019.