Interferry CEO Mike Corrigan delivers an update each month which summarizes Interferry activities including regulatory updates, conference developments and membership news. The CEO Update is sent out by email to our mailing list and is announced on Interferry’s company page on LinkedIn and on Twitter via @InterferryOrg.

Greetings Ferry Friends,

Before writing my final update for 2022, I thought I would look back at my previous reports for reference purposes. In doing so, I almost forgot that less than a year ago we were just about to enter another round of Covid-induced lockdowns. In fact, Interferry’s February 2022 board meeting in Whistler had to be cancelled and replaced with a virtual one.

And yet, unbelievably, a little more than seven months later we were able to host our most successful conference ever in Seattle, with almost 500 participants. If this isn’t a true testament to the resilience of the ferry community and human nature in general, I don’t know what is…

Hobart 2023 • The 47th Annual Interferry Conference • November 4-8, 2023

We are excited to confirm our event schedule for the Hobart conference being hosted by Spirit of Tasmania and its CEO, Bernard Dwyer, who is also an Interferry Board member and our current President.

The conference will be held at the Hobart Convention and Exhibition Centre (HCEC), located within the conference hotel – The Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart. The HCEC is the largest purpose-built conference and events facility in Tasmania and promises to be a fantastic venue. The conference will offer many networking opportunities, including coffee breaks and Happy Hours held in the HCEC. Sponsors and exhibitors will enjoy a flexible and open exhibition area in which to display their products and services.

Other networking opportunities and events include pre-tours to Port Arthur and Bruny Island; partner tours to Bonorong Park & Puddleduck Vineyard; the Sunday Welcome Reception at the Henry Jones Art Hotel and Atrium; the Monday Networking Reception at AURA; and the Farewell Dinner at Wrest Point which will include a Variety Show and Casino Night. Last but not least, the Technical Tour hosted by Incat founder and Interferry board member Robert Clifford will be a must-attend event and a fitting finale for the conference.

We have not yet chosen a theme for this year’s conference but expect to do so in the next month or so with the Call for Speakers to be issued in early spring.

Sponsor commitments have been brisk, as companies are keen to participate and support Interferry, the ferry industry at large as well as to promote their businesses. There still are sponsorships available, but they are filling up fast – so I encourage you to act earlier to avoid disappointment.

Please continue to check our conference website, follow our LinkedIn and Twitter accounts (hashtag #Interferry2023) and watch your email for ongoing conference updates.

Visits to Brisbane and Sydney

After spending the better part of a week in Hobart, we traveled to the equally beautiful cities of Brisbane and Sydney to visit ferry operators and suppliers.

In Brisbane, we were hosted by the Brisbane Economic Development Agency (BEDA) who provided a tour of the river city and all that it has to offer. BEDA is keen to get on our roster of potential future conference locations. We then were met by Tommy Ericson of Aus Ships Group and Len Kidd of RiverCity Ferries who took us on a fantastic tour of their respective operations, as well sailed down the Brisbane River on one of RiverCity’s ferries. The day culminated with a ferry trip on board the Tangalooma ferry from Moreton Island.

After a few days in Brisbane, we were off to Sydney to meet with the many ferry operators that provide services in the extremely busy Sydney Harbour – all this under the backdrop of its famous opera house. We called on Gary Iddon of Transdev Sydney Harbour Ferries and sailed on a few of his vessels. If you haven’t been to Sydney, it’s quite the spectacle to watch the water ballet that goes on throughout the day at the Circular Quay’s many piers as ferries from multiple operators come in and go out of the harbour like water bugs in the same fashion as cruise ships call and leave from the adjacent cruise ship terminal.

We also met with Nell Payne and Will Ford of NRMA on board one of their vessels and sailed to the popular beach destination of Manly on the outreaches of Sydney Harbour. We then traveled a short distance to King St. Wharf and met with Nick Lester of Sealink to see some of his operations.

While in Sydney, we were fortunately enough to meet with Jeremy Spears, a long-time Interferry member and supporter who is now also Chairman of the Australian International Marine Export (AIMEX), and AIMEX’s CEO, David Good. AIMEX is key partner of Interferry and excellent conduit into the Australia marine manufacturing and supplier industry.

We would like to thank everyone whom we met in Australia for their friendship and hospitality. The visit there reminded me once again that Interferry truly is one big family. We are therefore very much looking forward to catching up again with all our Aussie friends in Hobart later this year.

Regulatory Update • GHG

Several regulations relating to Green House Gases came into force on 1 January 2023. We have been very successful in making sure that the IMO technical requirements are feasible for ferry operators. The financial implications of the EU instruments will be significant, but as they form part of a wider societal push to decarbonize all activities we have engaged in is to ensure that the new situation is as fair as possible, without arguing against these dramatic changes.

The IMO’s Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI) is a retroactive application of the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) which has been in place for new ships for some time. The EEXI also obliges older ships to comply with the energy efficiency levels stipulated by the EEDI as from 1 January 2023. With Interferry’s active and ongoing involvement in the creation and implementation of these regulations, we are proud to report that EEXI member compliance is very high overall.

The IMO’s Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) sets out to require ships to operationally perform at least as well as the average performer of that ship type. So, if the average ferry consumes 100 kg of fuel per nautical mile, a ferry that consumes 150 kg is rated poorly and a ferry that only consumes 50 kg is rated as a top performer. These values are adjusted for ship size, but all other operational particularities are ignored. Interferry, joined by the rest of the maritime industry, has pushed back hard against this approach. There is no such thing as an average ship and being penalized for operating in harsh waters is simply unfair. Additionally, the CII also benefits steady-state operations, so the more port calls a ship makes in a year, the worse its CII becomes. For obvious reasons in ferry operations, being encouraged to make fewer port calls is not something we can accept.

Due to its obviously flawed design, the IMO has encouraged Flag States to not impose sanctions against non-compliance with the CII until at least 2026. Interferry would rather see the instrument repealed and reworked into something reasonable.

For companies calling at EU ports, the inclusion of Maritime into the EU Emission Trading System will come at a significant cost. Starting in 2024, the EU institutions have agreed that CO2 emissions related to EU operations will have to be paid for in a so-called cap & trade market. In simple terms, for every ton of CO2 a ship emits, the owner has to purchase an emission credit in an open market. The current price is around EUR 80 per credit, which corresponds to ca EUR 250 per ton of fuel. Given that the purchasing price of a ton of fuel is ca EUR 600 per ton, this is a significant cost increase – which is the very intention of the ETS, seeking to drive operators to low-carbon alternatives.

On the positive side, it is now almost a certainty that at least EUR 1.5 billion from the EU’s Innovation Fund will be available for financing the following types of projects: improvement in ship and port energy efficiency, innovative technologies and infrastructure, as well as the deployment of sustainable alternative fuels and zero-emission propulsion technologies. Final approval by EU Council and Parliament is expect by mid-February.

Upcoming February Activities

We don’t expect our schedule to slow down in February as we travel to Long Beach, California to attend and present at the Passenger Vessel Association of America (PVA) conference. We look forward to catching up with many of our US members and industry colleagues. Please stop by the Ferry Conference portion of the event on February 3rd to see our Interferry presentation “People and Power” given by Interferry Chairman Tim Mooney and myself.

After PVA, we are immediately off to Whistler, Canada for Interferry’s first Board meeting of 2023, taking place on February 7th. We look forward to welcoming the Board to our home country for the first time since we met in Vancouver in 2014.

Until next month, take care and stay safe……
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Season’s Greetings Ferry Fans,

Before writing my final update for 2022, I thought I would look back at my previous reports for reference purposes. In doing so, I almost forgot that less than a year ago we were just about to enter another round of Covid-induced lockdowns. In fact, Interferry’s February 2022 board meeting in Whistler had to be cancelled and replaced with a virtual one.

And yet, unbelievably, a little more than seven months later we were able to host our most successful conference ever in Seattle, with almost 500 participants. If this isn’t a true testament to the resilience of the ferry community and human nature in general, I don’t know what is…

Interferry’s 2022 Highlights

During 2022, as we transitioned out of a multi-year pandemic coma, there were many Interferry highlights worthy of note. However, in the interest of reducing the time it takes you to read this report, I have chosen a few that I feel are the most significant. More comprehensive lists and discussions can be found in each of my monthly reports in the CEO Update section of

  • Tim Mooney took over as Chairman for a three-year term effective October 4, 2022
  • A special thank you to Christophe Mathieu for providing extraordinary leadership as Interferry Chairman during the pandemic; and for hosting a hugely successful conference in Santander in 2021 that was recently awarded Event of the Year for the Cantabria region of Spain
  • Interferry’s Board welcomed new Directors Robert Clifford of Incat, Heidi Wolden of Norled AS, Terry MacRae of the Hornblower Group and Anders Rundberg of Carus
  • We had record attendance at the Seattle conference in October. Thanks to Patty Rubstello of Washington State Ferries and Matthias Pahnke of FRS Clipper for all their efforts in hosting
  • We held two well attended meetings of Interferry’s Operators Policy Committee, with significant time and effort spent on the GHG files at both the IMO and the EU
  • Spring and Fall rounds of multi-day meetings were held with officials of the European Union’s Commission, Council and Parliament in Brussels
  • We formalized partnerships with other industry associations including Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO), the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) and the World Shipping Council (WSC)
  • We signed a working agreement with the European Community Shipowner’s Associations (ECSA)
  • Major strides were made in the promotion of the ferry industry’s need for the rapid advancement and global development of Onshore Power Supply (OPS)
  • Two editions of the Ferry Business Report were published in conjunction with Cruise & Ferry Review
  • We announced Sorrento, Italy as our 2025 conference location, to be hosted by the Grimaldi Group – following Hobart, Australia in 2023 and Marrakesh, Morocco in 2024
  • Over 25 new members – both companies and individuals – joined the Interferry family during 2022. Listed below are the members who have joined since my last update in July:
  • Abelle Consulting Ltd / Nicholas Belle
  • Ballyhoo Media Services, LLC
  • Brock Solutions
  • Consilium Marine US, Inc.
  • Danfoss Editron Oy
  • EHRENBERG SØRENSEN Kommunikation
  • Flagship Cruises & Events
  • H3X
  • Martin Stewart
  • PROP
  • Sea Lines
  • Speedcast
  • TECO 2030 Inc.
  • Vancouver Island Ferry Company

Hobart 2023 • The 47th Annual Interferry Conference

We will head to Australia in early January to make final preparations for #Interferry47, to be held from 4-8 November 2023 in Hobart, Tasmania. Once again, this is shaping up to be an outstanding event as we return to the southern hemisphere for the first time since 2002. It’s never too early to book your travel plans – and make sure to allow some time before or after the conference to explore the “Land Down Under”.

Thanks for reading and – until we connect again – have a “Ferry Merry Holiday Season”.

Take care…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Hello Ferry Friends,

In this month’s report I would like to introduce the new Chair of Interferry’s Board of Directors, highlight our recent visit with the Danish Ferry Association and report on an important Operators Policy Committee (OPC) meeting.

Tim Mooney Takes the Chair

At our annual general meeting in Seattle in October, Tim Mooney of Fire Island Ferries in Bay Shore, New York, was unanimously endorsed as the new head of the Interferry Board of Directors for the next three years.

I know that many of you have already met Tim during his nine-year tenure as a board member or likely even before that at one of our conferences. In fact, Tim’s involvement with Interferry goes back decades to when his dad, Captain Ed Mooney, played an integral part in creating our association.

As a self-described “small operator”, Tim is sure to balance the association’s focus on all types of operator members at the Board table, as well as providing a US perspective on our strategic discussions through his involvement with the Passenger Vessel Association (PVA) of America.

Tim has spent considerable time traveling the globe and is well versed on ferry operations around the world. We look forward to his leadership over the next three years as we continue to grow our worldwide influence.

Interferry Meeting with the Danish Ferry Association

Regulatory Affairs Director Johan Roos and I were very pleased to be hosted by Danish Ferry Association board members while in Copenhagen in November. We had engaging and productive round table discussions with Jacob Clasen (Deputy CEO, Danish Shipping), Carsten Jensen (CEO, MOLSLINJEN A/S), Carsten Nørland (CEO, Scandlines) and Kristian Durhuus (CEO, ForSea).

L to R: Jacob K. Clasen, Danish Shipping; Carsten Jensen, MOLSLINJEN A/S; Carsten Nørland, Scandlines; Mike Corrigan, Interferry; Johan Roos, Interferry; Kristian Durhuus, ForSea

It is important that Interferry continues to prioritise meeting with national ferry industry associations whenever possible. I am always impressed that, regardless of where in the world we talk with ferry operators, the topics are almost always the same: customers, governments, regulators, fuel prices, zero emissions technologies, the environment and safety. Such discussions further emphasise Interferry’s reason for being and the need to continue providing our members with a conduit for sharing best practices and networking opportunities.

Operators Policy Committee (OPC) Meeting and ETS

Special thanks to Torben Carlsen and DFDS for hosting Interferry’s OPC meeting on November 15. With 23 participants, it was the best attended meeting of our committee, whose primary purpose is to set the association’s regulatory agenda.

Public affairs consultancy ADS Insight, which assists our efforts in Brussels with the European Union (EU), provided an overview of greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations that are being finalized in complicated tri-party negotiations between the EU’s Commission, Parliament and Council. Their presentation framed most of our discussions and ultimately led to the committee’s strong positioning at the meeting’s conclusion.

OPC members agreed that the two regulatory issues currently being finalized in Brussels likely to have the most significant impact on the ferry sector are the allocation of Emissions Trading System (ETS) revenues and the treatment of ETS for sea shipping vs road transportation.

Interferry has long argued it is critical that a significant portion of the ETS revenues generated from shipping under the new regulations flow back to our industry directly to ports and ferries. This is required to ensure funding is available to invest in technologies like the rapid advancement of electrification and onshore power development that are crucial to meeting impending GHG emissions reduction targets. It is still uncertain if a separate fund arising from the ETS scheme will be created for the shipping industry, or if the monies will flow back to member states to allocate as they see fit within their respective countries.

As a member of the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA), we have provided input and strong support for ECSA’s recent statement on this issue, which called for “earmarking of shipping ETS revenues in the final negotiating round”.

The second regulatory issue that could have a compounding negative effect on the ferry business is the implementation and timing of ETS on ferries in relation to if and when it is imposed on road haulage. Over the years, ferries have been successful in decongesting the motorways of Europe and improving overall air quality by shifting the movement of goods and cargo from roads to ferries. If ETS isn’t implemented for trucks or done so in an uncoordinated manner – i.e. long after ferries – then market distortion will be created causing an intermodal shift back to roads.

Coming out of the OPC meeting, as the window of opportunity to influence decision makers is rapidly closing, we immediately released the following statement: “Interferry urges EU co-legislators to safeguard modal shift objectives by ensuring timing consistency in the ETS for short sea and road transport”.

Our summary statement:

“Therefore, in view of the ongoing trilogue negotiations on the ETS, we call on the national governments in the Council and the Members of the European Parliament to preserve the key role of short sea shipping in reaching the EU’s modal shift targets. Interferry believes that to achieve this, the timing of the implementation of ETS for short sea shipping and road transportation should be done in a coordinated manner.”

Well, that wraps up my report for November, as we now enter the last month of 2022 and prepare for the busy Christmas season.

Until next time, be safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Hello Ferry Friends,

It was fantastic to see so many of you in Seattle – 490 attendees to be exact – which makes our 46th conference the biggest ever, even outpacing London in 2019. It was especially gratifying to see those of you who were unable to travel to Santander last year due to pandemic restrictions. While there will always be room for improvement, the feedback from our survey and other sources has been extremely positive regarding all aspects of the conference. We always encourage you to provide your input so we can make Hobart even better in 2023!

In this month’s report I would like to provide information on how you can access the Seattle conference Speakers Program videos and presentations, as well as the official Conference Guide. I also want to update you on four new Directors elected to the Interferry Board in Seattle, announce the location of the 2025 conference and highlight important upcoming meetings.

Seattle Conference • Speakers Program Presentations and the Conference Guide

The Speakers Program videos and accompanying presentations are now available on for members and delegates. I encourage those of you who were unable to be in Seattle to take some time and watch the videos of the sessions that may be of interest under the themes of Power and People.

Interferry members can access the presentations at You will need to log in to your Interferry account (your email and password) in order to view the page. If you have any trouble logging in please contact

Non-member attendees have been sent a link and password. If you have any trouble accessing the page or did not receive your link, please contact

You can also read the full conference guide, whether or not you attended the conference, since it is available digitally via PressReader both through their app and online via a browser. Through our strategic partnership with PressReader, conference delegates were offered one month’s free access to the thousands of newspapers and magazines available on their platform, including the Interferry Conference Guide. The online guide is enhanced with hyperlinks in the ads and articles which will help you learn more about our sponsors and their services, so I highly recommend that you take advantage of those features.

Those of you who are not already a customer of PressReader can sign up for a 7-day free trial. Once you’re set up with PressReader, simply search for “Interferry Conference Guide” in the app or click this link to get to the browser version.

New Interferry Directors  

I’m extremely pleased to welcome four new Directors to our Board for four-year terms. Representing the supplier community are Robert Clifford from Incat and Anders Rundberg from Carus. Both of these gentlemen should be very familiar to you since they have been directly involved with Interferry for decades, with Robert being a pioneer of building aluminum fast ferries and Anders leading the charge on customer information and billing systems.

Joining Robert and Anders on the Board under the Operators category are Heidi Wolden from Norled AS and Terry MacRae from the Hornblower Group. Heidi’s company is arguably leading the global ferry industry in our push towards zero emissions. Terry brings his vast experience operating passenger ferry systems and related tourism businesses across the globe to the Board table.

Please join me in welcoming all four of these accomplished individuals to the Interferry Board.

2025 Interferry Conference • Sorrento, Italy • Hosted by the Grimaldi Group

I’m very excited to announce that at our Seattle Board meeting the Interferry Board approved Sorrento, Italy as the site of our 2025 conference, to be hosted by long time and influential member the Grimaldi Group.

With the important port city of Naples (head office of the Grimaldi Group) and the world-renowned tourist areas of Pompeii, the Amalfi Coast and the island of Capri close by – coupled with the world-class conference center and hotel at the Hilton Sorrento Palace in the heart of Sorrento – 2025 is already shaping up to be another “must attend” event.

We have tentatively locked in the dates of October 4-8, 2025 and will confirm those once we have finalized the arrangements.

OPC Meeting • Copenhagen • November 15, 2022 • Hosted by DFDS

For those of you on Interferry’s Operators Policy Committee that sets the strategic regulatory direction for the organization, I look forward to seeing you at DFDS’s Copenhagen offices on November 15. With a full agenda of regulatory matters on the docket at the EU and the IMO, this should prove to be another productive and important meeting.

Upcoming Meeting with the Danish Ferry Association • November 14, 2022

While in Copenhagen for the OPC meeting, Interferry’s Regulatory Affairs Director Johan Roos and I will meet with the Board of the Danish Ferry Association on November 14. This is a great opportunity to discuss matters of common interest and opportunities to work closer together. Going forward, we will continue to look for opportunities to do this with other domestic associations as well.

Thanks for reading this latest update. As always, I appreciate your feedback.

Take care and stay safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Hello Ferry Friends,

As expected, the primary focus of this month’s report is on our Seattle conference, with the dual theme of “Power and People”, which is now only a month away! The entire Interferry team is excited to welcome our members and guests to the Bell Harbor Convention Center located on the Emerald City’s waterfront, with the two conference hotels – The Edgewater and Marriott Waterfront – only a short walk away.

In addition to a conference update, I also want to draw your attention to the recently released Ferry Business Report published in Cruise & Ferry Review in association with Interferry. As usual, the report is packed with informative and timely articles from industry leaders and Interferry members from across the globe.

Seattle Conference • Hotels Rooms Going Quickly & Post Conference Tour Details

I’m thrilled to report that even though we haven’t even hit September yet, which traditionally is the busiest month for conference registrations, we have already signed up over 330 participants. What is especially gratifying to see is the number of attendees coming from Australasia who weren’t able to participate in our 2021 Santander conference due to pandemic travel restrictions.

Not surprisingly, this means that both conference hotels’ allotted rooms are filling up fast. The September 7 deadline is quickly approaching after which the hotels will no longer guarantee a room at our special rate – which, if available, is significantly less than current rates in Seattle.

I’m also pleased to be able to announce the final details of our post conference tour organized and delivered by conference co-sponsor FRS Clipper. You can hop on their ferry for a beautiful three-hour sail to our hometown of Victoria, BC to experience the elegance of our quaint British influenced city. While in Victoria, you have the option to book a hotel room via FRS Clipper Vacations, as well as a tour to the world renowned, UNESCO endorsed Butchart Gardens. For those who only have a limited amount of time in Seattle after the conference, FRS Clipper Vacations offers a half-day whale watching tour in Puget Sound.

A special thank you to FRS Clipper for putting together these tour packages, and also for offering a 50% discount for travel on their ferry with a free upgrade to Comfort Class to delegates wanting to head north to Canada. Here’s a link to the Post Tour page on our conference website which provides more info including how to book directly through FRS Clipper Vacations.

Ferry Leaders Panels • Seattle Speakers Program

As has become a tradition due to their popularity, we are excited to end each day of the two-day Speakers Program with an hour-long Ferry Leaders Panel session. These panels bring together a broad array of leaders in our industry, both in terms of operational profile and geographic location, to provide their views on what they have seen and heard at the conference. Each session will include some opening comments from each of the panelists followed by a conversation among the group and Q&A from the audience via the Interferry46 conference app.

Here’s a breakdown of the participants for each of the sessions…

Ferry Leaders Panel Day One Participants • Topic: “Power and People”
Håkan Agnevall – CEO, Wärtsilä
John Garvey – Deputy Commissioner and COO, Staten Island Ferries
Jan Hanses – CEO, Viking Line
Peter Hebblethwaite – CEO, P&O Ferries
Mary Ann Pastrana – EVP and Treasurer, Archipelago Philippine Ferries

Ferry Leaders Panel Day Two Participants • Topic: “Innovation and Disruption”
Robert Clifford – Founder and Chairman, Incat
Seamus Murphy – Executive Director, San Francisco Bay Ferries (WETA)
Max Olson – Founder and CEO, Seachange
Billy Thalheimer – Founder, REGENT
Heidi Wolden – CEO, Norled

Ferry Business Report • Autumn/Winter 2022

Once again, Cruise & Ferry Review’s Ferry Business Report, published twice per year in association with Interferry, is packed with topical and interesting articles from our members and key industry players.

In addition to articles from myself and Johan Roos, our Director of Regulatory Affairs, on the ferry industry’s path towards meeting mandated CII emissions reduction targets, there are interviews with conference co-host Patty Rubstello of Washington State Ferries and Matthias Pahnke of FRS Clipper. Patty talks about WSF’s journey towards hybrid-electric propulsion and Matthias explains how the company managed through the pandemic and why he believes a brighter future lays ahead.

We also hear from Carsten Nørland, CEO of Scandlines, about operating the world’s largest fleet of hybrid ferries and its quest towards zero emissions status by 2040. Through his personal reflections, Peter Hebblethwaite, CEO of P&O Ferries, provides arguably the most interesting interview by reflecting on the reasons why P&O made the controversial decision to change its crewing model overnight.

Click here to read the Autumn/Winter 2022 edition and previous editions of the Ferry Business Report.

Well, that wraps up another month’s update which I hope you found informative and useful. As always, I appreciate your feedback.

I’m really looking forward seeing so many of you in Seattle in a month’s time.

Safe travels and take care…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Greetings Ferry Friends,,

In this month’s report, I’m pleased to provide a snapshot of the upcoming GHG regulatory agenda at both the IMO and European Union (EU), a reminder of the early bird registration deadline for our Seattle conference and the next steps in the Interferry Board’s process for appointing a new Director representing our supplier community. In addition, I’m proud to welcome our newest members that have recently joined the Interferry family.

Upcoming GHG Regulatory Agenda • IMO and EU

Interferry has followed the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) discussions for shipping since its inception at the IMO 15 years ago. Since their beginning, these discussions have been heavily influenced by EU countries, via the European Commission – with the EU threat that if the IMO doesn’t speed up, Europe will implement its own GHG regime unilaterally.

Despite the progress made by the IMO recently with the introduction of efficiency requirements (EEDI, EEXI), and the on-going Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) discussions focused on a fair basis for measuring fuel consumption efficiency, the EU has still decided to push its Green Deal agenda aggressively.

This year the EU will finalize its internal negotiations on the future Emissions Trading System (ETS) for Maritime. There has been some contention between the three negotiating parties: the EU Commission, EU Parliament, and EU Council – but it is evident that there will be an ETS for all ships >5,000 GT calling an EU port, most likely begin on January 1, 2024. However, it is worth noting that the Parliament is advocating to lower the threshold from 5,000 GT down to 400 GT – which would pull approximately 600 smaller ferries into the ETS scheme, primarily operating on short domestic routes.

The costs associated with the ETS are linked to the price of purchasing emissions rights corresponding to the amount of CO2 a ship will emit during the concerned voyage. Currently those costs correspond to around $250 per ton of fuel, which even in a non-inflated market would have represented a significant cost to operators. The EU agenda on ETS aims to cover all industry sectors and there is nothing specific that deals with ferries and ferry operations – so like it or not, the ETS will need to be considered a cost of doing business.

In addition to this purely financial instrument, for the second half of 2022 the EU is also aiming to conclude future technical and operational requirements on ships calling EU ports, including the mandatory use of shore power for passenger ships and the actual carbon content of the fuel used onboard all ships.

Since the requirement to connect to shore power is critical to the long-term success of the ferry industry, we will continue to make provision of Onshore Power Supply (OPS) a strategic priority and work closely with both industry partners and the EU institutions to ensure that we get this right.

On the IMO front, the CII, which was developed for long-haul deep-sea operations, is clearly unfair to ferry operators with a variable speed profile covering several port calls per day. To articulate this more clearly to the IMO, in September we will establish a dedicated CII team which will undertake an extensive data analysis of the current regulations, so that we can provide the ferry industry’s findings for an IMO review beginning immediately so revisions can be implemented in 2026. However, recording of data for CII will become mandatory starting the beginning of 2023 with reporting beginning on April 1, 2024.

Seattle Conference Early Bird Registration Deadline is August 15

It sure looks like we hit the jackpot with the Power and People themes for our annual global ferry industry get-together in October – hosted by Washington State Ferries and FRS Clipper in the world-renowned port city of Seattle. We are already seeing strong registration numbers for Seattle, with the deadline for early bird sign-ups still a couple weeks away. So, if you want to secure your seat at the conference, as well as get a discount on the full package, I encourage you to register on or before August 15. Here’s a link to the conference website registration page to get you started.

Also, for those suppliers still considering an exhibition space for the conference, we have very few remaining so please contact Sponsorship Manager Karen Giffon at right away if you are interested.

New Interferry Board of Directors Supplier Position

The Interferry Board is encouraged by the number of applications received from our Associate Members by the July 29 deadline for the vacant Director Supplier seats. As a next step, the Board’s Nominating Committee will be shortlisting the applicants over the next few weeks, with the goal of presenting its preferred candidate to the Board for its endorsement to the membership at the Seattle AGM.

Given the quality of the applications, we are confident that we will be successful in our efforts to attract a leader in our industry with in-depth knowledge of the ferry business who can best represent the interests of our supplier community.

Welcome to Our New Members

It is always a pleasure to welcome new members to the Interferry family. Since our last call-out in February, we are pleased to acknowledge our nine latest additions. As always and where appropriate, please look to our supplier members first when considering your various business needs.

New members since March 1, 2022:

• BC Ferry & Marine Workers Union
• Crowley Engineering Services
• MF Shipping Group
• Port of Seattle
• San Francisco Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority
• Steerprop Ltd.
• Trelleborg Marine & Infrastructure
• Washington State Department of Commerce
• Wightlink Limited

As I wrap up this month’s report, I would like to take a moment to thank Mark Collins, who recently departed BC Ferries, for his four-plus years of dedicated service on the Interferry Board, as well as his moderator duties and active participation at our annual conferences.

Until next time, stay safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Hello Ferry Friends,

In this month’s report, I’m pleased to announce the full roster of topics and presenters for our Seattle Speakers Program. This year we have taken even more care to ensure that the program reflects the wide variety of operator sizes and types, as well as the diversity of our supplier community, that is reflective our membership.

Also in this update, I would like to welcome a new Director and Co-President to the Interferry Board, advise our supplier members that we are seeking applications to fill a supplier Director position on our Board, and draw your attention to an important Interferry regulatory update.

Seattle Speakers Program

We have now posted the two-day Speakers Program taking place on October 3 and 4 to the conference website. I hope you’ll agree that it will be another world-class event centered on the dual theme of “Power and People”.

With regards to the People theme on Day 1, we have presentations on engaging young people in a maritime career, workforce outlook and trends, and dual courses of study. Also, since it is reasonable to assume that all our workforce challenges cannot be solved by hiring enough skilled people, we will also have a session on bridging the gap through automation.

Among highlights of the first day of the program, we will hear from our keynote speaker, Kelly Craighead, President and CEO of CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association), who will talk about the parallel universe that exists between the ferry and cruise businesses. Both industries face many of the same challenges regarding crewing their vessels and striving to meet zero emissions goals.

On the theme of Power during Day 2 of the program we will have comprehensive sessions and presentations on making onshore power supply a reality, fueling the future, propulsion efficiency, and leading the charge with batteries.

On both days of the speakers program we will have a session on green vessel projects when three presentations will be made by designers, builders and operators on their exciting leading-edge projects. On a related note, we are pleased to welcome Green Marine to the stage to talk about its highly respected North American environmental certification program and its expansion into Europe.

Also, no Interferry program would be complete without a regulatory update from Johan Roos, Interferry’s Director of Regulatory Affairs, or the inclusion of our popular Ferry Leaders Panels to wrap up both days of the event.

Finally, since I have been asked many times about ferry operators in the Black Sea given the ongoing war in the region, I have asked a respected former operator who is getting ready to start up a new business there to brief us on a business model that most of us would consider much too risky to even consider.

Here’s a link to the Speakers Program for your review.

Matthias Pahnke (FRS Clipper) • New Interferry Director and Co-President

At Interferry’s recent Board meeting in Rome, Matthias Pahnke, CEO of Seattle-based FRS Clipper, was approved as an Interferry Director and Co-President through to the end of this year’s conference. FRS Clipper, along with Washington State Ferries and its leader Patty Rubstello, are co-hosting the conference in the Emerald City from October 1 to 5. Matthias replaces David Gudgel, who left FRS Clipper to join Kenmore Air which is also located in Seattle. Congratulations Matthias, and we look forward to your hospitality this fall.

Expression of Interest • Interferry Board of Directors • Supplier Position

Also at our recent Rome Board meeting, the Board of Directors approved sending out a formal request to our supplier members seeking Expressions of Interest to fill a vacant Director position on the Board.

We are seeking an associate member in good standing who is considered a leader in the ferry industry. In addition to demonstrating in-depth knowledge of and experience in our industry, candidates need to able to fulfill a four-year term and attend board meetings held three times per year throughout the world.

Full details will be issued shortly through our Interferry News email distribution network. Application letters and CVs should be emailed to in my role as Corporate Secretary for consideration by the board’s Nominating Committee.

Regulatory Update • MEPC 78 Outcomes

The IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) held its 78th session from June 6 – 10. During this session, among other things, the Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI) and Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) regulations were finalized to enter into force in 2023.

As previously reported, compliance with EEXI by 2023 seems to be well in hand for our members, due in large part to Interferry’s continued active involvement in the process.

On the other hand, there still is much uncertainty regarding the CII timeline and enforcement criteria for vessels that fall outside the adopted sliding scale thresholds. Hopefully this will all be resolved during CII’s initial three-year review period ending in 2026. Since Classification Societies and Flag States will be key players over the next few years, Interferry recommends that members stay in close connection with them.

On a positive CII note, we were pleased to see that – as requested by us – the capacity parameter for ro-ro cargo ships was aligned with that for ro-ro passenger ships and changed to gross tons.

For a comprehensive explanation of MEPC 78, read Johan Roos’ recently issued Regulatory Report here on

Thanks for reading this month’s report. For those of you yet to register for the conference, I hope that my review of the Speakers Program now motivates you to do so. Also, for those considering sponsorship packages or exhibition stands, I strongly encourage you to make your commitment very soon – there aren’t many opportunities left!

Until next month, take care and stay safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Greetings Ferry Friends,

This month I would like to draw your attention to the recent joint statement we issued with the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO), tell you about the Shippax conference we attended, update you on our Seattle 2022 annual conference Speakers Program Call for Papers process and advise you on a wrap-up workshop for the HySeas III project that Interferry partnered in.

ESPO and Interferry Cooperation on Onshore Power Supply (OPS)

Following a very productive meeting I had with Isabelle Ryckbost, Secretary General of ESPO, in Brussels late last month, I’m pleased report that our two organisations issued a joint statement supporting our common goal of prioritising OPS for ferries.

Interferry has embarked on a schedule of meetings with senior decision makers from governments and ports to urge investment in OPS infrastructure. I very much value our collaboration with ESPO to work on our mutual sustainability ambitions.

Since greening the shipping industry and deploying OPS in ports will require huge investments, we are aggressively calling for revenues from the European Union’s Emissions Trading System (ETS), or any similar market-based measure, to go directly towards funding OPS deployment through a dedicated fund that will benefit both ports and ferries.

Here’s a link to the full story in the Interferry News.

Shippax Conference and Åland Islands Visit

Congratulations to Elizabeth Mandersson and her Shippax team for hosting a successful conference on board the Silja Symphony in early May. It was great to get to spend time with many of our Interferry members and sponsors as we sailed through the beautiful Swedish and Finnish archipelagos. Regulatory Affairs Director Johan Roos and I also very much valued the opportunity to present current happenings at Interferry, including our regulatory priorities, to the attendees.

While in the area, we were hosted onboard Viking Lines’ newest vessel, Viking Glory, as we sailed to the Åland Islands. To say that we were very impressed with the ship would be an understatement. A special thank you goes to Jan Hanses and his team for their hospitality and also to Anders Rundberg from Carus for hosting us in Mariehamn and setting up meetings with the local maritime and shipping community.

Seattle Conference Speakers Program • Call for Papers

I must say that the overwhelming response we received to our Call for Papers surprised even us. Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit a proposal on either our Power or People themes. Due to the number of submissions we have to diligently work our way through, it will likely be a little later than mid-June before we can get back to everyone.

Just a reminder that we are looking for abstracts that best encapsulate our themes and will enlighten and educate our delegates. It is also important that they do so without being overtly commercial. Furthermore, with regards to the Power theme, we will be prioritising proposals that can deliver technologically sound solutions to ferry operators within the next decade. In other words, the technology and energy solutions should be “leading edge… not bleeding edge”.

HySeas III Consortium Final Workshop • June 15 • Edinburgh

The HySeas III consortium, which Interferry is part of, will hold its final workshop in Edinburgh, Scotland on June 15. At the workshop, the team will share the results and impacts of the project. This will include a presentation on the market potential for hydrogen fuel cell powered ferries, as well as the results of the hydrogen fuel cell and battery propulsion string test.

Also covered during the session will be the ship design process and bunkering, including safety challenges and mitigation.

Here’s a link to the registration page if you would like to attend. Registration is free.

I think I will end it here for this month, as we get ready to jump on a plane to Rome for our upcoming Interferry board meeting.

Until next month, take care and stay safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Hello Ferry Fans,

While the health authorities keep cautioning us that we aren’t officially out of the woods yet regarding COVID, it sure feels like it with the number of kilometers the Interferry team logged and the many in-person meetings we participated in during April.

We visited Seattle for final preparations for our October conference, held an Operators Policy Committee (OPC) meeting in Madrid and took part in GHG/Onshore Power Supply (OPS) meetings with a number of industry associations and European Union (EU) officials in Brussels.

At the end of the month, we found ourselves in Stockholm preparing to travel on Viking Line’s new flagship, Viking Glory, as part of our visit to the Åland Islands to meet with Viking Line, Carus and various other industry contacts. We will then return to Stockholm to attend the Shippax annual conference, which takes place on Silja Symphony sailing to Helsinki and back on May 4-6.

Seattle Conference Registration is Open!

I’m pleased to report that we have finalized all the planning for Interferry’s 46th annual conference in Seattle from October 1-5 and registration is now open on our conference website. I’m confident that you will be impressed with the host of venues and events being offered in and around the Emerald City, where our conference centre and two host hotels are a short walk from each other on the waterfront.

In addition to another world-class Speakers Program, we think you’ll be enticed to register early by our evening networking events at the breathtaking Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibition, Boeing’s Museum of Flight and an authentic Pacific Northwest indigenous clam bake at Kiana Lodge, as well as a wide array of pre-tours and partner/spouse tours.

Seattle Conference Speakers Program – Call for Papers Deadline is May 13

The May 13 submission deadline for our Call for Papers focusing on “Power and People” is quickly approaching. Check the Call for Papers page on the conference website for complete details including submission requirements.

Under the “Power” theme, presentations are invited on any sustainable, future-proof vessel powering options and the related challenges – notably the regulatory targets for greenhouse gas emissions reductions of some 50% by 2030 and a “net zero” scenario by 2050. With electrification emerging as the ferry industry’s key driver towards these goals, special focus will be given to papers on the development of OPS in ports and terminals.

The “People” sessions aim to explore issues facing operators regarding staffing and succession planning, with particular attention to training and retention at a time when the maritime sector, like all industries, is facing an acute shortage of skilled labor.

Please note that Interferry members and conference sponsors will be given first-priority for speaking slots, subject to the merits of their respective submissions. Also, since Interferry is a not-for-profit organization, selected speakers are responsible for their own conference registration costs.

OPC Meeting – Madrid

On April 26 we had a very productive and well attended OPC meeting in Spain with the majority of committee members participating. This was the first time that the committee – which provides management with strategic direction on regulatory matters – was able to meet in person since the pandemic began.

The committee spent considerable time discussing EU passenger rights legislation, RoPax fire safety improvements and proposed changes to the IMO’s High-Speed Craft (HSC) Code. However, as expected, the major agenda item was the upcoming GHG regulations being finalized at both the IMO and EU, which prompted spirited and engaging discussions around the table.

Everyone expressed their views after Interferry’s proposed OPS action plan was presented at the meeting. Some committee members then suggested that our messaging needs to be expanded to include more than just a call to action for the immediate development of port electrical infrastructure. They said we should also send a clear signal to the marketplace that ferry operators must be treated equitably and fairly when paying for the required onshore electrical supply.

In other words, there needs to be transparency in the development of the fees that ferries pay to plug in. This full disclosure should include the methodology used in the allocation of each port’s capital and operational costs, as well as an offset for any subsidies or incentives ports receive to develop their OPS infrastructure.

Brussels – GHG Discussions and Onshore Power Promotion Meetings

At the end of the month in Brussels, we spent two full days in meetings with various parties to build support for our OPS initiative, while at the same time researching which EU agencies are likely to have funding that operators can tap into to meet their GHG emissions reduction targets.

From an industry association perspective, we had an excellent meeting with the European Sea Ports Organization and the World Shipping Council, agreeing to work collaboratively with both bodies in our joint interest to advance OPS infrastructure development and gain EU funding for such projects. Likewise, we re-established our historically close relationship with the European Community Shipowners’ Association, so that we can work in a co-ordinated manner on a broad array of regulatory matters.

In an effort to better understand the upcoming EU GHG regulations – including implementation timelines, measurement criteria and funding sources – we met with officials in various departments at the EU Commission. What is clear after participating in all these meetings is that there is still a lot of work to be done before a clear path forward can be identified. The biggest question is how the funds from the Emissions Trading System (ETS) will flow back to our industry to help offset the enormous costs we will incur installing ship and shoreside equipment to meet the upcoming targets.

While there is still much regulatory uncertainly, we are confident that we walked away from each meeting achieving our near-term objectives.

Shippax Conference and Co-Promotion of Industry Newsletter

As I wrap up this month’s report, we are looking forward to the Shippax conference and reconnecting with many of you at the event. I would like to invite you to attend the presentation that Johan Roos and I are making during the speakers’ program.

Interferry has a long and mutually beneficial partnership with Shippax, which includes sponsoring each others’ conferences, promoting the weekly Shippax online newsletter, and the sharing of data and information which provided much of the input to our recently released Ferry Market Study.

I hope to see many of you onboard the Silja Symphony.

Take care and stay safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Greetings Ferry Friends,

Welcome to a much-anticipated spring for those of us in the northern hemisphere and likely a more relaxing fall for those reading this update in locations south of the equator.

In this report, I’m pleased to announce the date we will be issuing our Call for Papers for submitting proposals for our Seattle conference. On a related note, we have now opened the conference presentation section of our website to everyone (not just members) so that the entire 2021 Speakers Program from Santander is available for viewing.

This month I’m proud to be able to, once again, present you with the semi-annual issue of Ferry Business report published in Cruise & Ferry Review magazine in partnership with Interferry.

I would also like to share with you an excellent video from our Platinum sponsor, DNV, on the various alternate fuels options being considered by our industry in its push towards zero emissions.

Next month we will hold our first in-person OPC meeting in quite some time, and I want to provide some details about the many important topics on the agenda.

And finally, on a sombre note, I would like to acknowledge a true leader in our industry who recently passed away.

Seattle Speakers Program Call for Papers • “Power and People” • April 12

After much anticipation, we will be issuing our Call for Papers for the Seattle Speakers Program on April 12. I encourage those of you interested in being considered as a speaker to pay close attention to the submission requirements – particularly focusing on the theme “Power and People”.

Please visit the Interferry News on, check our LinkedIn page and Twitter account or watch for our Interferry News announcement in your inbox on April 12. If you have not already done so, I encourage you to subscribe to our mailing list so you will automatically receive all our Interferry and conference related communications.

For those interested in submitting a proposal to speak in Seattle, I suggest that you watch the presentations from our Santander conference that are now available to everyone.

Ferry Business Report • Spring/Summer 2022

Published in association with Interferry, the Spring/Summer 2022 edition of the Ferry Business report in Cruise & Ferry Review is packed with executive interviews from a number of our members and long-time supporters.

In addition to my commentary focusing on Interferry’s call to rapidly expand and develop Onshore Power (OSP) infrastructure, this edition includes a roundtable discussion on sustainability and fuel plans with passenger ferry operators Red Funnel (Fran Collins), Uber Boat by Thames Clippers (Sean Collins) as well as Fire Island Ferries and San Juan Clipper (Morgan Mooney).

Other notable names in the Report include Baleària’s Adolfo Utor, BC Ferries’ Corrine Storey, Irish Ferries’ Andrew Sheen, Strategic Partnership’s Mary Scott Nabers and ferry expert Michael Grey.

You’ll find links to the Spring/Summer 2022 issue of Ferry Business – along with past issues – here on

DNV Video • The Potential of Promising Alternative Fuels

As everyone in the ferry world looks for solutions to meet its zero emissions ambitions and the various regulatory bodies’ mandates, here’s a link to “The Potential of Promising Alternative Fuels”, a 5-minute video from our Platinum sponsor DNV. The video does a great job of summarizing the potential benefits and challenges of the most common fuel types being considered – natural gas, ammonia, methanol, and hydrogen.

Upcoming Operators Policy Committee (OPC) Meeting • Madrid • April 26

For the first time since before the beginning of the pandemic, we are excited to be holding an in-person OPC meeting on April 26 in Madrid. The 22 OPC member companies invited to the meeting will be discussing and setting strategic regulatory direction on a number of initiatives that are vitally important to the success of our industry.

As expected, a good portion of the meeting will focus on GHG emissions reduction requirements in the areas of Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII), Alternative Fuels, Onshore Power Supply (OSP), Emissions Trading Systems (ETS) and onboard energy efficiency requirements. These GHG discussions will also include identifying and prioritizing funding programs available from the European Union and other governments to incentivise and assist shipowners in achieving  their emissions reduction targets.

Other items to be discussed at the Madrid OPC meeting include: a review of the EU Passenger Rights Regulations for Maritime Transport, Ropax Fire Safety and expanding the scope of the high-speed craft code to include all types of light-craft.

The Passing of Antonio Armas Fernández

On behalf of the entire Interferry family, we wish to express our condolences to the family of Antonio Armas Fernández, the president of Spain’s Naviera Armas Trasmediterránea, who passed away on March 15, 2022. Mr. Armas, a long-time member of our association, was a true leader in our industry who in 1973 first introduced ro-ro ferry service in the Canary Islands.

photo ©Philippe Holthof

Thanks for reading this month’s report. Please feel free to pass along any comments, questions or suggestions you may have for me at any time.

Take care and stay safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry

Dear Ferry Friends,

It is with a heavy heart I start off this month’s report by expressing my sincere condolences to all those affected by the recent fire onboard the Euroferry Olympia. To everyone involved, from the passengers and crew to our Interferry member – the Grimaldi Group – our thoughts and prayers are with you.

This tragic incident reminds us all of the constant need for our industry to continue to place safety and the protection of our most precious cargo – our passengers – above all else. While statistics provide clear evidence that incidents of this type in places like Europe are extremely rare, there is always more we can do – because one life lost is one too many.

That is why (as you have read in my most recent updates) Interferry is currently heavily involved in two major fire safety initiatives, along with its member companies including the Grimaldi Group. These initiatives – the European Commission’s LASH FIRE project and the IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee deliberations – will lead to further advancements in all aspects of fire safety protection onboard ferries. More information on both of these initiatives is available on the RoPax Fire Safety page in the Regulatory Affairs section of our website.

As I am more than aware from my 14 years of operational ferry experience, transportation companies – whether they run ferries, airlines, trains, etc. – cannot provide 100 per cent certainty that incidents and accidents will never happen. However, they can provide assurance that by implementing a progressive safety management system and “learning” culture, the risk of these types of events can be reduced as low as reasonably practicable.

Newest Addition to the Mercy Ships Fleet Arrives

After many years of planning and construction, I am pleased to say that the newest addition to the Mercy Ships fleet (our charity of choice) will soon arrive in the Port of Rotterdam. I am, of course, talking about the Global Mercy.

The Global Mercy will deliver a safe and clean environment to various African nations, providing help and resources from some of the most well-trained physicians in the world. Over the vessel’s 50 years expected lifespan, it is estimated that more than 150,000 lives will be changed on board through surgery alone.

The 174-metre, 37,000-ton ship will have six operating theatres and house over 600 volunteers from around the globe representing many disciplines, including surgeons, maritime crew, cooks, teachers, electricians, the host staff and more. The ship will also feature a 682-seat auditorium, student academy, gymnasium, pool, café, shop and library – all of which have been designed to accommodate up to 950 crew onboard when docked in port.

While the ship is in Rotterdam, Mercy Ships is hosting a special “Come on Board” celebration through March 14 during which in-person and virtual visitors can sign up for a live or virtual tour of this wonderful vessel. You’ll receive tailor-made content providing a never-before-seen look inside this unique ship. You’ll hear stories straight from patients and crew from around the world and participate in events in real-time.

It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime event to visit this vessel of hope. I invite you to click here to get started:

Please note the times for the various events are in the CENTRAL EUROPEAN TIME ZONE, so you will have to convert the registration to your own time zone when you choose one of the many available times.

Welcome Onboard to our New Members

I’m very pleased to be able to welcome the following new members to the Interferry family. It’s great to see so many companies – both ferry operators and suppliers – realizing the benefits of joining our worldwide organization, especially during these difficult times. I encourage all members to first consider their fellow members when doing business. Please remember that Interferry members who want to get more information about all of our members can use our members-only contact database.

Association of Pacific Ports, CANADA
Astican & Astander, SPAIN
Boundary Layer Technologies, USA
E Smart Transport Company Limited, THAILAND
Erzia Technologies, SPAIN
Incat Crowther, AUSTRALIA
Linnhe Maritime Projects Ltd., UK
Malta Shipbrokers International Ltd., MALTA
Marine Log, USA
Moreton Island Adventures, AUSTRALIA
National Ferries Company (MWASALAT), OMAN
Rhoe Urban Technologies, GREECE
Seachange, NEW ZEALAND
Prince Yommy Sopitan, NIGERIA
Surikat AB, SWEDEN
Ticknovate, ENGLAND
Wilco van der Linden, NETHERLANDS
Viking Maritime Group, UK

Thanks for reading this month’s update.

Take care and be safe…
Mike Corrigan, CEO – Interferry

Hello Ferry Friends,

As we are now firmly into 2022, it’s a good time to turn our attention to Interferry’s 46th annual global ferry conference taking place in Seattle this year from October 1-5. In this report, I’m excited to announce the theme for this year’s Speakers Program, as well as update you on our increasingly popular sponsorship opportunities.

In addition to talking about the conference, this month I want to draw your attention to an informative presentation on alternative fuels delivered at our Santander conference, provide an overview on Interferry’s recent Operators Policy Committee (OPC) meeting and draw your attention to our recently posted regulatory update on Ro-Pax fire safety.

Seattle Conference Speakers Program • ‘Power and People’

We’ve landed on a dual theme for this year’s program that encapsulates arguably the two biggest challenges facing our industry – having the necessary shoreside electrical infrastructure readily available to us to harvest the benefits of our onboard zero emissions investments; and having enough skilled crew and employees – our most valuable assets – to allow us to provide ongoing, reliable operations well into the future.

I’m confident that these themes will provide for two days of educational and thought-provoking discussion on what we can do as an association and an industry to set ourselves up as best as possible for future success. If there was ever a conference that you need to participate in to understand the challenges and opportunities facing the global ferry industry…this is it!

We will be officially issuing our Call for Papers in April. In the meantime, I encourage potential presenters to start thinking about how to submit a proposal that will best engage and educate the 300-plus senior ferry leaders expected to be in Seattle. For everyone else, it’s time to start planning your trip. It shouldn’t be difficult to convince yourself or others of the benefits of being in the Emerald City this fall from an educational and developmental standpoint.

Seattle Sponsorship Opportunities In Demand   

Considering we still have eight months until our Seattle event, I continue to be amazed at the increasing demand for our sponsorship and exhibition space offerings. It seems that, after the London and Santander conferences, things have gone to a new level. From a business development perspective, I’m pleased to see our supplier community realizing the benefits of one on one, face to face opportunities to interact with global senior decision makers in the ferry world. There really is no ‘better bang’ for your sales and marketing dollar.

If you are considering a sponsorship package or exhibition space for Seattle, I encourage you to contact Interferry’s Sponsorship Manager Karen Giffon on a priority basis to ensure that you aren’t disappointed. Karen can be reached at

You can also see what packages are still available in the sponsorship section of the conference website.

Santander Conference Presentation • ‘Future Fuel Mix for Ferries: Where Does Hydrogen Fit In?’ • Sami Kanerva, ABB Marine and Ports

While I’ve been talking a lot lately about the need for Onshore Power (OSP), there is still plenty to be done on the water side as we continue our journey towards a world of zero emissions. From a fuel standpoint, it can be extremely confusing to consider all the available options and where hydrogen fits, especially given the various size and trades of vessels.

At our Santander conference, I thought Sami Kanerva of ABB Marine and Ports did an outstanding job of summarizing a very complex subject in his 14-minute presentation ‘Fuel Cells in Commercial Ferry Operations’. If you didn’t attend the conference, or haven’t watched the conference videos in the members-only section of our website, you can watch it here on a publicly accessible page on this website – no login required.

The video is well worth the watch – special thanks to Sami and ABB for the presentation.

Interferry Operator Policy Committee (OPC) Meeting • January 18

An important OPC meeting was held via Zoom this month on January 18, with invitations going out to the 22 member companies that comprise the OPC. Two mission-critical position papers were presented. The first paper put forth Interferry’s proposed position on the European Union’s Emissions Trading System (ETS) for shipping, which is part of their all-encompassing ‘Fit for 55’ program. The second paper formally outlines Interferry’s proposed position regarding Onshore Power (OSP).

Both papers were tabled for the Committee’s consideration and input. Member companies were asked to respond by the end of the month with any further comments and whether they support the proposals.

Assuming the papers are given the green light by the OPC after any requested modification, they will then be presented for final consideration and endorsement to Interferry’s Board of Directors during the February 8 Zoom meeting. Stay tuned for a further update next month.

I should add that discussion on the position papers prompted the OPC to request that future meetings include a new agenda item on alternate fuels and the path forward.

Ro-Pax Fire Safety

As I reported last month, we continue to have an influential voice on the fire risk front. Interferry is deeply involved in an IMO Ro-Pax fire safety correspondence group established to help draft SOLAS amendments due in force from January 2024. The group has made great progress and will report its findings to the IMO’s Ship Systems and Equipment sub-committee in March for potential adoption. Meanwhile we are also part of the European Union’s four-year LASH FIRE project, which in December hosted a virtual conference outlining numerous operational, technical and insurance innovations.

The recently updated Ro-Pax Fire Safety report in the Regulatory Affairs section of our website provides a detailed discussion on this important multi-faceted initiative including its background, current status and next steps.

Thanks for reading this month’s report. I encourage you to start planning your Seattle trip – and to whet your appetite, be sure to visit the Interferry Conference website to get the most up to date conference information.

Until next month, take care and be safe…
Mike Corrigan – CEO, Interferry