Understanding The International Convention For The Prevention Of Pollution From Ships


MARPOL, the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, is a vital framework ensuring that maritime activities minimize their environmental impact. Enacted in 1973 and revised in 1978, MARPOL addresses various forms of pollution, including oil, chemicals, sewage, garbage, and air emissions. Let’s delve into its significance and key annexes.

Combatting Oil Pollution

MARPOL Annex I focuses on preventing oil pollution by regulating the discharge of oil and oily mixtures from ships, ensuring proper handling, storage, and disposal. It mandates surveys, certifications, and the implementation of Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plans (SOPEPs) to mitigate spill incidents.

Controlling Hazardous Substances

Annex II targets pollution from noxious liquid substances, establishing rules for their carriage, handling, and discharge. It outlines stringent requirements for chemical tankers, including surveys, certifications, and operational controls, to safeguard marine ecosystems from hazardous spills.

Managing Waste Disposal

Annexes III, IV, and V address pollution from harmful substances carried in packaged form, ship-generated sewage, and garbage disposal, respectively. They prescribe protocols for proper packaging, storage, treatment, and disposal of waste materials to prevent marine contamination and uphold environmental sustainability.

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Source: Seatrade Maritime