Gladstone Ports Corporation (GPC) has just announced that they will apply to the State and Federal Governments for approval to widen the Clinton Channel by about 100 meters.
As a result of the development of the Wiggins Island Coal Terminal there is increased Cape size vessel traffic passing the RG Tanna wharf facility, GPC said.
GPC identified that vessel interaction forces can be an issue when large vessels pass the wharf and has worked with industry specialists and key stakeholders to investigate improvement options and select a preferred mitigation strategy.
GPC’s Chief Executive Officer, Peter O’Sullivan, said that the submission of applications for the project followed more than 12 months of detailed planning and investigations to explore several options to improve vessel interaction safety.
“Due to the current configuration of the Clinton Channel, vessels are required to pass within approximately 80 meters of those vessels berthed at our RG Tanna wharf,” Mr O’Sullivan said.
“This means that displaced water from the passing vessel results in significant forces on the vessels at berth, posing a risk of vessels breaking mooring lines and moving off the RG Tanna wharf.
“To alleviate the current situation, both GPC and the Regional Harbor Master have implemented temporary processes to reduce these risks, however a permanent solution is required to ensure the safe and efficient passage of vessels through our harbor.”
The project will not begin until all required approvals and conditions are in place with work expected to commence in the latter half of 2018, according to GPC.
The proposed project involves removal of approximately 800.000m³ of material from the Clinton Channel.
If approved, the dredged material will be placed in the existing Western Basin Reclamation Area, creating strategic port land for potential future industrial use in the Port of Gladstone.