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This Week n Logistics News (February 24 – March 1)

By March 1, 2024Uncategorized

Yesterday was February 29th, meaning that 2024 is a Leap Year and yesterday was Leap Day. Leap years exist because while the world follows a 365-day Gregorian calendar, it actually takes Earth 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 46 seconds to orbit the sun, according to NASA. While that is rounded down to the 365 days we recognize as a typical year, those nearly six extra hours do not disappear. Instead, leap years are added to account for the difference. The extra day keeps calendars and seasons from gradually falling out of sync and impacting harvesting, planting and other cycles based on the seasons. Without Leap Days, in 100 years, calendars would be 24 days off, and in 700 years, Northern Hemisphere summers would begin in December. However, Leap Year does not occur every 4 years. The rule is that if the year is divisible by 100 and not divisible by 400, leap year is skipped. The year 2000 was a leap year, for example, but the years 1700, 1800, and 1900 were not. The next time a leap year will be skipped is the year 2100. And now on to this week’s logistics news.

FedEx warns of higher costs under trucker rest break waivers
US, UK strike Houthi sites in Yemen
CVS partners with Grubhub for delivery
Walmart hits supply chain emissions goal 6 years early
FMC releases final rule on detention and demurrage
UAW says majority of workers at Mercedes Benz US plant seek to join union
Warehouse boom fades

FedEx predicts higher costs on its linehaul and delivery routes as well as those of rivals if the Biden administration approves waivers governing truck driver meal and rest breaks in California and Washington. In comments filed with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, FedEx asserted that if the FMCSA were to waive its preemption over the two states’ meal and rest break (MRB) laws — which would make interstate carriers subject to the stricter state rules — it will cause financial havoc as well as decrease safety. Under pressure to reduce injuries and deaths from crashes involving heavy trucks, FMCSA in August 2023 notified the trucking industry that it would entertain requests to waive agency decisions made in 2018 and 2020 that ruled federal hours-of-service rules (HOS) preempt MRB laws in California and Washington, respectively, for interstate trucking. (The preemption didn’t affect the states’ ability to enforce their MRB laws on drivers registered to haul only within the state.)

The U.S. and the U.K. hit 18 Houthi targets in Yemen on Saturday in response to a recent surge in attacks by the Iran-backed militants on ships in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden. The bombings focused on military targest in eight locations in Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen, the U.S. Defense Department said in a statement. The targets included Houthi underground weapons storage facilities, missile storage facilities, drones and air defense systems, according to the statement. U.K. Defense Secretary Grant Shapps said the airstrikes were intended “to further degrade Houthi drones and launchers used mount their dangerous attacks.” Since November, the Houthi rebels have launched more than 30 attacks on commercial and naval vessels in the Red Sea in protest against Israel’s war on Gaza.

CVS Pharmacy has partnered with Grubhub to make thousands of beauty, household, wellness and convenience items available for delivery from its 6,000+ stores in 48 states. The companies are kicking off the relationship with a collection of Daylight Saving Essentials designed to address the grogginess that often follows the time change, which will take place this year on March 10. From March 9 to 13, customers who spend $20 or more with CVS via Grubhub can get a free item from this Daylight Savings assortment, which includes coffee, tea, protein bars and supplements. The discount will be automatically applied at checkout, and members of the Grubhub+ loyalty program will have access to $0 delivery fees on eligible orders.

Walmart said its suppliers have removed 1 billion metric tons of greenhouse-gas emissions from their value chains, six years ahead of the target date. In 2017, the retail giant started an initiative to encourage its suppliers to reduce their carbon footprint, aiming to avoid, reduce or sequester the 1 billion tons of emissions by 2030. This week, the company said that its suppliers have achieved that goal, working on measures such as energy efficiency, packaging redesign, food-waste reduction and trucking-load optimization. The company, based in Bentonville, AR said that 75 percent of net U.S. sales in fiscal 2023 came from suppliers enlisted in the project. A weekly look at environmental, social and governance issues and strategies for corporate decision makers. The initiative, dubbed Project Gigaton, is aimed at reducing so-called Scope 3 emissions, which are the result of a company’s supply chain and the use of its products. These emissions often represent the bulk of a company’s carbon footprint.

The Federal Maritime Commission released a new rule on detention and demurrage billing practices as part of its compliance with the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022. Detention and demurrage billing practices were major problems for shippers during the pandemic. Ocean carriers collected about $6.9 billion in detention and demurrage costs from 2020 to 2022, according to the FMC’s final rule shared on Feb. 23. A key regulation the FMC outlines is the distinction of who receives an invoice.

Detention or demurrage invoices can be issued to either the person for whose account was provided services from the billing party and the person who contracted with the billing party.
Another option is the consignee, meaning “the ultimate recipient of cargo; the person to whom final delivery of the cargo is to be made.”
An invoice cannot be issued to both parties mentioned in the first bullet and the second bullet. Nor can a billing party issue an invoice to any other person.

The United Auto Workers (UAW) union said on Tuesday that a majority of hourly workers at a Mercedes Benz Alabama factory have signed cards to join the union. In response, Mercedes Benz did not say whether it would recognize the union or contest the effort ahead of a potential vote. The company said it has a strong record of success in more than 25 years of operations in Alabama and believes “open and direct communication” with its employees “is the best path forward to ensure continued success.” In November, the UAW said it was launching a first-of-its-kind push to publicly organize the entire nonunion auto sector in the U.S. employing about 150,000 hourly workers after winning record new contracts with the Detroit Three automakers. About 6,000 workers are employed at the German automaker’s Alabama plant that builds the GLE and GLS.

The e-commerce boom didn’t just change consumers’ lives, it transformed entire regions, turning backwaters into logistics-driven boomtowns. Now, some of those regions confront an uncomfortable question: What do you do when the boom ends? Nowhere is that question more pressing than in San Joaquin County in California’s Central Valley. A decade ago it had one of the highest unemployment rates in the U.S. Many of its workers relied on seasonal agricultural jobs. Relatively few had college degrees. Everything changed when Amazon.com opened its first warehouse in 2013. It touched off a land rush, with major retailers vying for space to fill online orders from the San Francisco Bay Area. Transportation and warehousing employment in the region more than tripled in the decade to December 2022, accounting for 44 percent of total job growth in the metropolitan area around Stockton, San Joaquin County’s largest city.

That’s all for this week. Enjoy the weekend and the song of the week, Look Before You Leap by the Dave Clark Five.

The post This Week n Logistics News (February 24 – March 1) appeared first on Logistics Viewpoints.

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