New on-line weather and wave forecasting tool enhances safety at Port of Halifax

The Government of Canada, Province of Nova Scotia, and partners celebrate the completion of the SmartATLANTIC Herring Cove Buoy project

HALIFAX, Jan. 20, 2014 /CNW/ - The official launch of the SmartATLANTIC Herring Cove Buoy website took place today in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Nova Scotia Regional Minister and MP for Central Nova, on behalf of the Government of Canada, along with the Honourable Labi Kousoulis, Nova Scotia Minister of the Public Service Commission, on behalf of Economic and Rural Development and Tourism Minister Michel Samson, today announced the launch of the SmartATLANTIC Herring Cove Buoy website which will help keep mariners safe while increasing productivity, reducing costs, and moving goods through the Port of Halifax more effectively.

This new website provides real-time data from the inshore weather buoy that was originally deployed in the waters off Herring Cove, Nova Scotia on November 7, 2013. The data includes high resolution weather and wave forecasting for the Halifax Port Authority and will be used for education and scientific research.

Its purpose is to provide real-time weather and directional wave information online for shipping operations and recreational boaters. With accurate data, shipping companies will have additional information to safely navigate their vessels through the waterways leading into the Port of Halifax. This technology improves the port's reliability, and supports better planning and more efficient operations by shippers and others using it.

Quick Facts

  • Transport Canada will contribute $171,000 of the total cost of $366,000 under the Strategic Highway Infrastructure Program (SHIP) Intelligent Transportation Systems.
  • The Province of Nova Scotia provided $150,000 in start-up funding.
  • Annual operating and maintenance costs will be funded for a period of 10 years by the Atlantic Pilotage Authority and the Halifax Port Authority.
  • Marine pilots carry out about 3,100 transfers to the port each year, which will be made safer through the accurate weather information provided through the SmartATLANTIC technology.
  • About 200 technology projects totaling over $30 million have received funding so far under the Intelligent Transportation Systems Strategic Plan for Canada, En Route to Intelligent Mobility.


"Our government is proud to support this smart technology that will improve safety, reduce costs, and increase the efficiency of the Port of Halifax - a crucial link in the Atlantic Gateway. This initiative is the latest in a long list of Atlantic Gateway improvements we have made since 2006, putting Atlantic Canada in an excellent position to capitalize on our government's new trade agreement with Europe."
The Honourable Peter MacKay
Minister of Justice, Attorney General of Canada, Regional Minister for Nova Scotia and MP for Central Nova

"We are pleased to support this project, along with the federal government and the many partners involved. This sophisticated tool will provide significant benefits for our position as a transportation and trade gateway, and help improve safety for mariners and the flow of marine commerce in and out of the Port of Halifax."
The Honourable Labi Kousoulis
Nova Scotia Minister of the Public Service Commission

"For the first time in Halifax, real-time high resolution weather and wave forecasting is available online to mariners, fishers and recreational boaters, enhancing not only the safety and efficiency of port operations, but also Canada's oceanographic and meteorological research capabilities."
Jim Hanlon
Chair, Halifax Marine Research Institute (HMRI)

"The SmartATLANTIC Herring Cove Buoy will provide invaluable forecasting data and, therefore, will enhance safety from an overall perspective, while improving the efficiency of commercial activities at the port."
Karen Oldfield
President and CEO, Halifax Port Authority

"For marine pilots, this new technology will provide data to greatly assist in safely and effectively serving our clients. The more information we have about weather and sea conditions, the safer those transfers will be."
William Rooney
Acting Chair, Atlantic Pilotage Authority

Associated Links

SOURCE: Transport Canada

For further information:


Marie-Josée Paquette
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of Infrastructure, Communities and Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Media Relations
Transport Canada, Ottawa

Tina D. Thibeau
Media Relations Advisor
Nova Scotia Department of Economic and Rural Development and Tourism

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