From June 1st, 2023, MARPOL Annex IV applies to passenger ships in the Baltic Sea
Jan 26, 2023
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June 1st, 2023, is the date on which the discharge of sewage requirements of regulation 11.3 of MARPOL Annex IV in respect of the Baltic Sea Special Area shall take effect, for existing passenger ships en route directly to or from a port located outside the special area and to or from a port located east of longitude 28˚10' E within the special area that do not make any other port calls within the special area.
This decision by International Maritime Organization is made in accordance with the requirements set out in regulation 13.2 of MARPOL Annex IV, the discharge requirements for Special Areas in regulation 11.3 of MARPOL Annex IV for the Baltic Sea Special Area.
Let's remind that the IMO's Marine Environment Protection Committee, recalling Article 38(a) of the Convention on the International Maritime Organization concerning the functions of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (the Committee) conferred upon it by international conventions for the prevention and control of marine pollution from ships, noting that regulation 1.6.1 of Annex IV of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as modified by the Protocol of 1978 relating thereto (MARPOL), defines the Baltic Sea as a Special Area under the said Annex.
IMO also recorded that the definition of a Special Area under MARPOL Annex IV is "a sea area where for recognized technical reasons in relation to its oceanographical and ecological condition and to the particular character of its traffic the adoption of special mandatory methods for the prevention of sea pollution by sewage is required."
IMO further noted that "the information provided to the Committee, at its sixty-eighth session, by Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Sweden, and, at its sixty-ninth session, by the Russian Federation, representing the MARPOL Parties bordering the Baltic Sea Special Area, regarding reception facilities provided within the said Special Area, in accordance with regulation 13 of MARPOL Annex IV".
IMO also encourages Member Governments, industry groups, and other stakeholders concerned to comply immediately on a voluntary basis with the Special Area requirements for the Baltic Sea Special Area.