Regulatory framework

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REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

MARPOL: International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships
AFS: International Convention on the Control of Harmful Anti-Fouling Systems on Ships
BUNKERS: International Convention on Civil Liability for Bunker Oil Pollution Damage
CLC: International Convention on Civil Liability for Oil Pollution Damage
FUND: International Convention on theEstablishment of an International Fund for Compensation for Oil Pollution Damage
INTERVENTION: Convention Relating to Intervention on the High Seas in Cases of Oil Pollution Casualties
OPRC-HNS: Protocol on Preparedness, Response and Co-operation to Pollution Incidents by Hazardous and Noxious Substances
OPRC: International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation
SUPPLEMENTARYFUND: Protocol to the International Convention on the Establishment of an International Fund for Compensation for Oil Pollution Damage

MARPOL
The MARPOL Convention is the main international convention covering prevention of pollution of the marine environment by ships from operational or accidental causes. It was adopted on November 2, 1973 at IMO and covered pollution by oil, chemicals,harmful substances in packaged form, sewage and garbage. It has been updated by amendments throughout the years.
The Convention includes regulations aimed at preventing and minimizing pollution from ships - both accidental pollution and that from routine operations - and currently includes six technical Annexes. Special Areas with strict controls on operational discharges are included in mostAnnexes.

Annex I 
Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution by Oil (entered into force 2 October 1983)

Covers prevention of pollution by oil from operational measures as well as from accidental discharges. The 1992 amendments to Annex I made it mandatory for new oil tankers to have double hulls and brought in a phase-in schedule for existing tankers to fit double hulls, which wassubsequently revised in 2001 and 2003.

Annex II 
Regulations for the Control of  Pollution by Noxious Liquid Substances in Bulk  (entered into force 2 October 1983)

Details the discharge criteria and measures for the control of pollution by noxious liquid substances carried in bulk. Some 250 substances were evaluated and included in the list appended to the Convention.  The discharge of theirresidues is allowed only to reception facilities until certain concentrations and conditions (which vary with the category of substances) are complied with.
In any case, no discharge of residues containing noxious substances is permitted within 12 miles of the nearest land.  More stringent restrictions applied to the Baltic and Black Sea areas.   

Annex III
Prevention of Pollution by HarmfulSubstances Carried by Sea in Packaged Form (entered into force 1 July 1992)

Contains general requirements for the issuing of detailed standards on packing, marking, labelling, documentation, stowage, quantity limitations, exceptions and notifications for preventing pollution by harmful substances. The International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code has, since 1991, included marine pollutants.Annex IV
Prevention of Pollution by Sewage from Ships  (entered into force 27 September 2003)

Contains requirements to control pollution of the sea by sewage.
 
Annex V
Prevention of Pollution by Garbage from Ships (entered into force 31 December 1988) 

This deals with different types of garbage and specifies the distances from land and the manner in which they may be disposed of.  Therequirements are much stricter in a number of "special areas" but perhaps the most important feature of the Annex is the complete ban imposed on the dumping into the sea of all forms of plastic.
 
Annex VI
Prevention of  Air Pollution from Ships (entered into force 19 May 2005)

The regulations in this annex set limits on sulphur oxide and nitrogen oxide emissions from ship exhausts as...
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