National Academies Press: OpenBook

Clean Ships, Clean Ports, Clean Oceans: Controlling Garbage and Plastic Wastes at Sea (1995)

Chapter: Clarify Extent of Port State Authorities

Suggested Citation:"Clarify Extent of Port State Authorities." National Research Council. 1995. Clean Ships, Clean Ports, Clean Oceans: Controlling Garbage and Plastic Wastes at Sea. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/4769.
Page 198

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OVERARCHING ISSUES AFFECTING ANNEX V IMPLEMENTATION 198 TABLE 7-2 Flag State Responses to U.S. Reports of Alleged Annex V Violations by Foreign-flag Vessels (since December 31, 1988)a As of 6/92 As of 6/94 Reports transmitted 111 365 No acknowledgement 76 (68.5%) 203 (55.6%) Acknowledged but no other information given 23 (20.7%) 84 (23.0%) Fines levied by flag state 2 (1.8%) 20 (5.5%) Otherb 10 (9.0%) 58 (15.9%) a The 1994 figures include cases referred to flag states under both the old and the new (post-October 1992) U.S. enforcement policies. Because the referral rules changed, the 1992 and the 1994 data do not reflect exactly the same types of cases. However, the two data sets are comparable in that both include only referrals to flag states and exclude direct enforcement actions taken by the United States. b Includes all other cases, including those that were investigated and dropped, those in which warnings or reprimands were issued, and those in which the flag state was not a party to MARPOL. Sources: 1992 data obtained from a report submitted to IMO (United States, 1992); 1994 data provided by the Department of State, Office of Ocean Affairs. violation, then often the location of illegal disposal cannot be established adequately for direct U.S. enforcement action. Options for Improving Annex V Enforcement Annex V establishes simple performance standards, but the sheer number of garbage transactions taking place overwhelms any capability for direct surveillance, by either the Coast Guard or any other authority. Therefore, other alternatives need to be employed where possible, or compliance falls short. A new balance is needed that fosters robust compliance capabilities among vessels, ports, and governments and enhances the effectiveness of existing enforcement mechanisms. Over the long-term, this approach would lay the foundation for a strengthened enforcement capability. Most of the options discussed here were mentioned in previous chapters. Clarify Extent of Port State Authorities The Coast Guard informed a Senate subcommittee in 1992 that notice of its new enforcement policy was submitted to the Marine Environmental Protection

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Marine debris is a serious environmental problem. To do its part, the United States has agreed to abide by the international treaty for garbage control at sea, known as MARPOL 73/78 Annex V.

Clean Ships, Clean Ports, Clean Oceans explores the challenge of translating Annex V into workable laws and regulations for all kinds of ships and boats, from cruise ships to fishing crafts and recreational boats. The volume examines how existing resources can be leveraged into a comprehensive strategy for compliance, including integrated waste management systems and effective enforcement.

Clean Ships, Clean Ports, Clean Oceans describes both progress toward and obstacles to Annex V compliance. The book covers:

  • How shipborne garbage orignates and what happens to garbage discharged into the seas.
  • Effects of discharge on human health, wildlife safety, and aesthetics.
  • Differences in perspective among military, industrial, and recreational seafarers and shoreside facilities.

Clean Ships, Clean Ports, Clean Oceans will be important to marine policymakers, port administrators, ship operations officers, maritime engineers, and marine ecologists.

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