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CITT and METRANS to Host U.S., Canadian and Mexican Experts

Published: March 1, 2011

On Thursday, March 3, the Center for International Trade and Transportation (CITT) and METRANS will bring together a unique gathering of researchers, industry representatives and government officials from the United States, Mexico and Canada to explore common trends that influence the economic competitiveness and environmental sustainability of Pacific Port Gateway Regions.

Titled “Collaborators and Competitors: Understanding the Connections Between Canadian, American and Mexican West Coast Ports and Gateway Regions,” the event will be held at CSULB at The Pointe in The Walter Pyramid from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

On Friday, March 4, a core group of researchers will follow-up with a meeting at the CITT offices to discuss the previous day and develop further steps to assure a long-term research collaborative that’s multi-disciplinary, and involves researchers from all three countries from different fields including economics, geography, environmental studies, and policy.

The event will be led by Thomas O’Brien, director of Research for CITT at CSULB, who is partnering with Peter Hall of the Urban Studies Program at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, and Carlos Vazquez of the Urban and Environmental Studies Program at Colegio de la Frontera Norte (COLEF) in Mexico. The lead sponsor for this conference is the Canadian Government’s North American Research Linkages (NARL) program which serves to facilitate North American collaboration within the research community and to foster the development of permanent exchange networks in Canada, the United States and Mexico.

The objective of the event is for representatives from the goods movement industry, local communities, governmental stakeholders, and researchers to explore the common trends that influence the economic competitiveness and environmental sustainability of Canadian, U.S. and Mexican Pacific Port Gateway Regions, as well as the unique pressures that drive policy making at the local, state/provincial and national levels.

“The purpose of the conference is for academia and industry to share the stage, so industry can tell researchers what’s most important to them and for researchers to tell industry what they are doing and if it makes sense,” said O’Brien. “This is an important event because it’s rare to have researchers from all three NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) countries in the same room. It happens with Canadian and American researchers, but rarely involves researchers from Mexico. I think this will provide good information and a good understanding of the ways ports and gateway regions along the West Coast of the entire North American continent can work together to address common problems like environmental issues and that sort of thing.”

Session topics will include implications of trade trends on the North American West Coast, cross-border issues (land, air and sea), environmental policy making, and technology and innovation at U.S., Canadian and Mexican ports.

The agenda for March 3 and confirmed participants include:

Session I: 8:30-10 a.m., Implications of Trade Trends for West Coast Ports. The panel will include Carlos Jauregui, port director, Port of Ensenada; Carlos Martner Peyrelongue, coordinator, Instituto Mexicano del Transporte; and Paul Evans, director, Institute of Asian Research, University of British Columbia.

Session II: 10:30 a.m.-noon, Planning and Policy Making for Cross Border (Mega) Regions: Regional Land Use Planning. The panel will include Tina Casgar, San Diego Association of Governments; and Garland Chow, director, Bureau of Intelligent Transportation Systems and Freight Security (BITSAFS), Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia.

Lunch Panel: Noon-1:45 p.m., Lunch Panel: Environmental Issues for Ports and Gateway Regions. The lunch panel will include Robert Kanter, Port of Long Beach; Darrell Desjardin, director, Environmental Programs, Port Metro Vancouver; and Melissa Marron Cabrera, ecological coordinator, Port of Ensenada.

Session III: 1:45-3:15 p.m., Planning and Policy Making for Cross Border (Mega) Regions: Air and Water Districts. The panel will include Linda Fernandez, adjunct associate professor, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside; and Cynthia Marvin, assistant division chief, Stationary Source Division, California Air Resources.

Session IV: 3:30-5 p.m., Technology, Productivity, and Innovation in Gateway Regions. The panel will include Anne Goodchild, assistant professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Washington; Daniel Olivier, analyst, Transportation Gateways and Corridors, Transport Canada; and Tom Ward, chief engineer, Ports America (Invited); Peter Peyton, president, ILWU Local 63.

For additional/updated information on the March 3-4 event, visit the link at the METRANS website.

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The METRANS Transportation Center is a United States Department of Transportation University Transportation Center (UTC). Established in 1998 through the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), METRANS is a joint partnership of the University of Southern California and CSULB.
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The Center for International Trade and Transportation, housed at CSULB’s College of Continuing and Professional Education, is a multidisciplinary center for multifunctional transportation studies and integrated logistics research, education, training, policy analysis, and community outreach.

–Shayne Schroeder