Gillian Kirk, Liza Aboud, Catherine Wade and Melanie Mackay are on the board of directors for Ridley Terminals Inc. and were present at the annual public meeting on July 17, 2018. (Shannon Lough / The Northern View)

Equality and more jobs in coal terminal’s future

Ridley Terminals Inc. shipments out of Prince Rupert increased by 90 per cent in 2017

Numbers talk, whether its the amount of tonnage shipped to foreign markets, or the gender ratio on the board of directors.

Ridley Terminals Inc. held its Annual Public Meeting on July 17, and based on the numbers presented it was clear the Crown corporation has clawed its way out of the dark.

“We’re out of the tunnel now, the light is really bright,” said Marc Dulude, president and chief operating officer for Ridley Terminals.

In 2017, vessel shipments totalled 7.56 million tonnes, an increase of 90 per cent from the previous year, and Dulude said this year it’s only going to be way better. In June, the terminal shipped more than one-million tonnes, and it’s expecting to handle nine-million tonnes in 2018.

Here are highlights from the coal terminal’s public meeting.

Bust to boom

Global coal markets have recovered and are on the rise. Last year, the company ran a $1.2-million loss forecasting improved market conditions and increased coal shipments.

The demand for steel has buoyed the shipments of metallurgical coal, while petroleum coke and thermal coal also had a strong year. Total revenues were $178-million, up 192.5 per cent from the previous year.

READ MORE: Ridley Terminals moves ahead with expansion project

Dulude said they’ve signed and renewed major long-term contracts, and the future is bright. RTI is investing $232-million in the terminal in the next five years, $149-million of which is going into expanding the berth, if approved by federal authorities.

Jobs, jobs, jobs

With all the business growth, and possible expansion, Ridley Terminals has 125 people on its team and plans to hire another 15-25 people. When asked if the company plans to specifically hire First Nations members and women, Dulude said, “You’re going to see that yes we want to achieve equity on gender.”

Ridley Terminals is currently working on a strategy to have its workforce more representative of the make up of the community, which includes more First Nations and more women.

Dulude said it’s about developing talents and paying attention to the nature of jobs in the future. Programming talents will be needed, which is why Ridley Terminals has invested in coding and technology in Prince Rupert classrooms.

“We’re trying to figure out what the organization will need in the future,” he said.

Gender equality

In recent months, the board of directors has seen a complete restructuring. As of June, four women and three men make up the board of directors.

Melanie Mackay and Catherine Wade, who is Métis, were appointed in February, while Liza Aboud joined the board last month, and Gillian Kirk was appointed in 2015.

“There is an energy and a freshness. I feel a little more freedom. It’s been really good,” Kirk said at the public meeting.

Wade is leading a review of the organization and making sure it’s updated to the current standard.

“There’s nothing that inhibits a woman from being a director,” Wade said.

Achieving gender equality in Canada has been a strong theme for the federal Liberal government.

Auditor General Report

Failures in Ridley Terminal governance was revealed in a report released in April. In response, the board chairman, Michael McPhie, said in the last six months they’re completely up to date with four of the five-year plans approved.

He also said there was a deficiency in the number of appointed directors to the board until this year.

READ MORE: Report finds failures in governance at Ridley Terminals

“Now, we have a full compliment of directors, which also allows us be properly governed with committees, with proper oversight of operations, all that sort of thing,” McPhie said.

In one of the recommendations that came from the report, the Transport Minister has asked that the board report on a quarterly basis. Travel and hospitality expenses for the board and president are available on Ridley Terminal’s website.

“The objective for us now is to say, okay Ridley is doing quite well as an organization, as you can see. We’ve got a good new management team in place and Marc has done really well. We have a whole new board complement so now maybe we can work together and address these individual items.

“I like our new board, it’s completely absolutely gender parity. We have some awesome new people who are really talented, and now we can look forward. That’s the plan,” he said.

Next up, Ridley Terminals will be celebrating 35-years, as well as 2oo-million tonnes shipped.

 

shannon.lough@thenorthernview.com 

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

Just Posted

Worse for wear: Prince Rupert’s outdoor gym is removed

Just short of its tenth anniversary, the green gym closes over safety and maintenance concerns

Pembina plans $20M dock repairs on Watson Island

The project intends to make improvements to the wharf and trestle

City pays last respects to former councillor and fisherman Paddy Greene

Greene was a long-time fisherman in Prince Rupert who passed away May 17, 2019

Search and rescue equipment on Lax Kw’alaams receives critical upgrades

First Community Investment Fund from the Port of Prince Rupert announced in 2019

New Seven Sisters replacement confirmed

Mental health facility will have 25 beds, up from 20 in current facility

Kelowna toddler suffers cracked skull after fall from balcony

Neighbour who found the two-year-old boy said he has a bump the size of a golf ball on his head

Pipeline protester chimes in on Justin Trudeau’s B.C. fundraising speech

The government purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline and expansion project for $4.5 billion

Canada stripping citizenship from Chinese man over alleged marriage fraud

The move comes amid severely strained relations between Ottawa and Beijing

Nevada court orders former Vancouver man to pay back $21.7M to investors

The commission says Michael Lathigee committed fraud over a decade ago

Baby boom seniors putting pressure on B.C. long-term care: report

B.C. leads Canada in growth of dementia, dependence on care

Roadside device to weed out THC can’t detect impairment, B.C. lawyer says

‘This fact alone is likely to have serious implications for Canadians’ Charter Rights,’ lawyer Sarah Leamon warns

B.C. firefighters rescue frozen dog from ice

The fire crew found a dog stuck in the at Lake Paul on May 20

Okanagan company wins contract for LNG Canada project in Kitimat

SK Form & Finish will work with equivalent of 4,000 fully loaded concrete trucks

Most British Columbians agree the ‘big one’ is coming, but only 50% are prepared

Only 46 per cent of British Columbians have prepared an emergency kit with supplies they might need

Most Read