Six New Icebreakers Announced for Canadian Coast Guard

file photo
file photo

By The Maritime Executive 08-04-2019 09:05:48

Canada's Minister for Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Jonathan Wilkinson, announced on August 2 that the Coast Guard will be procuring six new program icebreakers to replace its current aging fleet.

The Government of Canada is officially launching a competitive process, through an Invitation to Qualify, to add a third Canadian shipyard, joining Irving Shipbuilding and Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards, as a strategic partner under the National Shipbuilding Strategy. This new shipyard will build the new program icebreakers for the Coast Guard. Davie Shipbuilding is considered a likely contender for the work.


The new program icebreakers will replace the Coast Guard’s heavy and medium icebreakers that operate in Atlantic Canada and the St. Lawrence waterways during the winter and in the Arctic during the summer. In Atlantic Canada, these program icebreakers help ensure year-long ferry service, escort ships through ice-covered waters and the clearance of ice from harbors and wharves, which is essential to Canada’s commercial fisheries. In the Arctic, they provide ice-breaking support to ships with vulnerable cargoes, such as dangerous goods and perishable products, and support vessels transporting cargo that is a vital part of the northern communities’ sealift and resupply.

On May 22, 2019, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that the Government of Canada is investing $15.7 billion to renew the Coast Guard fleet, with up to 16 Multi-Purpose Vessels to be built at Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards and two new Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ships to be built at Irving Shipbuilding.

To date, the Government of Canada has awarded more than $11.4 billion in NSS-related contracts across the country.