Monthly report 4: Interim Protocol for the Use of Southern B.C. Anchorages

The Interim Protocol for the Use of Southern B.C. Anchorages came into effect on February 8, 2018.

This report is for May 1 to May 31, 2018.

On this page

Highlights for May

  • Transport Canada’s National Aerial Surveillance Program:
    • completed 26 coastal flights
    • visually conducted a total of 1,327 ship inspections
    • did not observe pollution from the commercial ships anchored along the south coast
  • Vancouver Fraser Port Authority continued to follow up with ships that didn’t comply with the protocol’s light and noise guidelines
    • Some residents were frustrated at having to make a complaint before a ship dims its lights or reduces noise.
    • However, the response to requests was generally positive, and we think it will improve even more as ships become aware of the protocol.
    • If you submitted a report, please send us your feedback by email to: so the Chamber of Shipping and the Shipping Federation of Canada can follow up with shipping companies.
  • Interest in the National Anchorage Initiative remains high
    • Our Vancouver Oceans Protection Plan anchorage desk continues to get inquiries about the interim protocol from coastal residents.
    • We received 43 inquiries (complaints, comments and suggestions)
      • We record all comments and suggestions, and share them with the national anchorages project lead.

Data review

  • This month’s data review includes:
    • pie charts by south coast anchorage groupings, which show:
      • days at anchor
      • distribution among anchorages for April and May
    • new graphs showing total days at anchor by anchor grouping from February to May
  • To receive the summary data for south coast anchorages for February, March and April 2018 please email:

Anchorage use between April and May

  • The number of vessels arriving at anchorage were about the same April and May.
  • The total days spent by the vessels at anchor was lower in May.
  • Anchorages that were not used in May:
    • Captain’s Pass anchorage
    • Kulleet Bay anchorage
  • Anchorages (all for larger vessels) that were used more in May:
    • “Cowichan Bay C & D”
    • “Plumper sound B & C”
    • “Trincomali 1”
  • Some of the south coast anchorages were used more because:
    • bulk commodity vessels can require several trips to terminals for partial loading
    • the wait time between trips is often several days
      • We will analyze the movement data to get information about ships that needed multiple trips to complete loading
    • vessel transits to and from certain anchorages can only take place during daylight hours.

Additional information

Time limit on length of stay

  • Some coastal residents have suggested that south coast anchorages should:
    • have a time limit on length of stay imposed
    • move ships to another south coast site after a specified period be required
  • Transport Canada continues to conduct the analysis of the use of anchorages and are considering all suggestions.

New email address for anchorage inquiries

To ensure that we do not miss any important feedback, we’ve set up a dedicated email address for all inquiries related to anchorages:


Please send your anchorage inquiries to

If you have comments or suggestions about anchorages, you may also join the conversation at Let’s Talk – Oceans Protection Plan.

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