In a historic first for Canada Steamship Lines, the Canada Games and Great Lakes shipping, the Canada Games Torch embarked on board the biodiesel-fuelled bulk carrier, CSL St-Laurent during a ceremony last evening at St-Lambert Lock near Montreal.
As part of the Niagara 2022 Canada Summer Games Torch Relay, the traditional Roly McLenahan torch is being carried on board CSL St-Laurent along the St-Lawrence Seaway all the way to Port Colborne, where it will disembark to continue its voyage on land toward the opening of the Canada Games, taking place in the Niagara region from August 6th to the 21st.
“The Canada Games reinforce traits such as resilience, determination and tenacity in our young athletes, which are also qualities our seafarers share,” said Louis Martel, President and CEO, The CSL Group. “Shipping at CSL is effectively like a team sport, where each member – on water and on land – contributes to the operation of these huge machines in a safe, efficient and eco-responsible way.”
At the helm of CSL St-Laurent is Captain Anita Lambe, an all-around athlete and basketball player, who was selected to participate in the 1993 Canada Games. “Playing sports has always been a big part of my life, and it’s what drove me to join an industry that is all about being a team player – and marine shipping is exactly that,” remarked Captain Lambe. “It is truly an honour for me and my crew to be navigating the first-ever torch-bearing vessel.”
Earlier this year, CSL unveiled a colossal mural to capture the spirit of the Canada Games on CSL Welland, CSL St-Laurent’s sister ship. Created by four of Canada’s top young artists, the mural reflects the broad mix of people, cultures, backgrounds and abilities in amateur sport today. CSL St-Laurent is also adorned with a beautiful mural depicting a colourful Canada Goose in flight.
Both sister ships, along with six other vessels in CSL’s Great Lakes fleet are running on pure B100 biofuel, made entirely from waste plant material. The success of using biofuel on CSL ships has demonstrated the viability and practicality of this green alternative in supporting the decarbonization of marine transportation.
“Congratulations to the Niagara 2022 Host Society and their partner Canada Steamship Lines for their beautiful and unique vision for the 2022 Canada Games Torch Relay,” said Kelly-Ann Paul, President and CEO of the Canada Games Council. “Having the torch journey along the waterways towards Niagara is certainly a first in Canada Games history, and one that will spark greatness and astounding momentum towards the Niagara 2022 Canada Summer Games in August.”
“For the next two days, we invite coastal communities along the St-Lawrence River to follow the historic journey of CSL St-Laurent from Montreal to the Niagara region,” added Mr. Martel. “We also encourage everyone to look out for CSL Welland on which The Runners and the legacy of the Niagara 2022 Canada Games will live on for years to come.”
CSL thanks the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, whose collaboration and support has been essential in making it possible for the Canada Games Torch to be carried along our waterways.