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Suggested Citation:"Analysis of Interventions." 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 116

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ELEMENTS OF AN IMPLEMENTATION STRATEGY 116 to maintain logs of garbage transactions. These logs can be reviewed during the Coast Guard's oversight inspections of 10 percent of offshore platforms annually. Efforts to encourage Annex V compliance by the offshore industry are under way. Even before U.S. ratification of Annex V, MMS issued guidelines for reducing marine debris, recommending that offshore operators conduct worker training and awareness sessions, adopt waste reduction strategies, and implement control systems to account for the proper disposal of garbage, especially drums and hazardous items (Minerals Management Service, 1986). Federal officials also have spearheaded a number of other pollution prevention programs in the Gulf of Mexico, such as the Take Pride Gulf Wide campaign. In addition, an industry organization, the Offshore Operators Committee (OOC), has established an Ad Hoe Task Group on Waste Handling and Recycling. As a result of OOC efforts, half of the platform operators have banned the use of foamed plastic offshore, to reduce the chances of this material being discharged into the gulf (Anderson, 1992). Analysis of Interventions Table 4-6 suggests possible interventions to improve Annex V implementation in the offshore oil and gas industry. Because this industry is so prevalent in the Gulf of Mexico and must anticipate operating in a special area, zero-discharge capability must be achieved or maintained. Technological interventions may not be critical in this sector, because garbage is transported to shore regularly (thereby eliminating the need for treatment on platforms). Organizational interventions may be more useful. In establishing a corporate culture supportive of proper garbage management, platform operators could use only vendors committed to waste reduction and take measures to secure the plastic sheeting used to protect materials in transit. The OOC task group may develop other useful strategies, such as recycling programs. Educational approaches include informing company managers about garbage handling mandates and strategies. These efforts could capitalize on the voluntary work of the OOC; the partial ban on use of foamed plastic could be held up as an example of how to eliminate or minimize waste—either voluntarily or by mandate. Regulatory interventions include MMS examination of garbage and equipment handling practices during routine inspections and oversight, and Coast Guard review of garbage logs during occasional platform inspections. Increased surveillance of this sector seems justified, especially in view of concerns that the current level of environmental protection may decline as increasing numbers of independent operators enter the industry. On the other hand, the size of the offshore industry is shrinking. Economic interventions include making offshore operators aware of the benefits of maintaining a positive public image through compliance with environ-

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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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