Bunkering = most berths permit same, but some have surcharges. Some berths do not permit bunkering at all – and in those cases the only option is to arrange for a layberth (which therefor adds extra pilotage, tugs, linesmen, dockage and security charges to the port call) or gamble on arranging bunker delivery at Bolivar Rhoads Anchorage (down in Galveston Bay, near Galveston). There is a hefty bunker barge delivery surcharge at Bolivar Rhoads (as there is all through the Galveston area) and the “gamble” for bunkering there is that: a/ space at the anchorage is 1st come, 1st served – so there is no guarantee that there will be a place to stop precisely when it is needed b/ if the weather is rough, the pilot may require a tug to assist into and/or out of the anchorage – AND if the wind/seas are up then the bunker barge may not be able to come alongside. That situation has the possibility of dragging out for a long period of time. c/ depending on where the ship is coming from and how long she is at the anchorage, CBP may require the ship to be entered/cleared. This will involve launch usage/costs and extra time/travel for the agent.
Tug usage = Owner’s choice of Bay Houston or Suderman & Young
Closest airport = IAH Bush International, Houston 30-60 minute drive to most locations, traffic permitting Alternatively HOB William P. Hobby, Houston 20-40 minute drive to most locations, traffic permitting
Vessel crew cargo hold washing = most locations not a problem
Cargo hold washwater disposal= not permitted into the channel at all. Any such discharges can only be made into shuttle truck evacuated “frac tanks” ashore. Each tank can hold up to about 75 mt, and each truck is limited 18 mt. The overall cost for this operation will depend on the number of tanks needed, but delivery, rental and disposal will cost thousands. Even a typical cleaning can easily cost $15,000-20,000 just in washwater removal/disposal expenses.
With respect to discharging cargo hold washwater offshore, the IMO’s Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC) has declared the Wider Caribbean Region a special area under MARPOL Annex V effective May 1, 2011, IMO has now issued a revision for hold washings from bulk carriers.
Accordingly, cargo hold washings containing any dry cargo material generated in connection with hold cleaning is not to be considered as garbage under MARPOL Annex V and can be discharged at a distance of more than 12 NM from shore. It is noted that the cargo hold washing water cannot contain material classified as pollutants in the IMDG Code. A copy of the directive and guidelines can be found here and here.
Freshwater availability = most berths have freshwater hook-ups, and most of them are quite reasonable with just a few hundred dollars needed to take 100-200 tons.