32 Ocean L. Memo 1 (1988)

handle is hein.journals/ocoaslme32 and id is 1 raw text is: 



Ocean and Coastal  Law Center * School of  Law * University of Oregon  * Eugene  97403






    A Ocea Law Mem.o


ISSUE 32


February 25, 1988


RECENT DEVELOPMENTS IN OCEAN AND COASTAL LAW, 1987


I.    INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENTS


     A. 1982 U.N. Convention on  the Law
of the Sea: Ratifications

     As  of  January  1988,  thirty-four
nations have now ratified  the 1982 Uni-
ted Nations Convention on the Law of the
Sea.    Nations  recently  ratifying the
Convention  include  Paraguay, which de-
posited its  instrument  of ratification
on 26 September 1986,  followed by Demo-
cratic Yemen on 21  July  1987  and Cape
Verde on 10 August 1987.  The Convention
will  enter  into  force  twelve  months
after the deposit  of  the  sixtieth in-
strument of ratification.

     Of the thirty-four ratifications to
date, the nations ratifying  the Conven-
tion have predominantly been third world
developing nations.   Though  the United
States refuses  to  sign  or  ratify the
Convention, it  does recognize that many
of  the  Convention's  provisions embody
current  customary   international  law,
with the  notable exception  of the Con-
vention's provisions regarding deep sea-
bed mining.

     B. MARPOL Annex II

     Annex II of the  1973 International
Convention for the Prevention  of Pollu-
tion from Ships, as amended by  the Pro-
tocol of  1978  (MARPOL  73/78), entered
into force  on 6  April 1987.   Annex II
sets forth  measures to control the dis-
charge  of   noxious  liquid  substances
carried on board vessels.   Included are
rules governing the  discharge  of cargo
into receiving tanks  on  shore  and the
discharge of residues at sea as  well as
two codes mandatory  under  MARPOL 73/78
relating  to  the  carriage  of  noxious
liquid substances.

     Under  Annex  II regulations, ships
certified  to  carry  certain substances
will be required to be fitted with effi-


cient  pumping  systems  to remove cargo
residues.  The regulations  also mandate
tankwashing for  the most hazardous sub-
stances  before  the  ship  leaves part.
Port reception  facilities  are required
for a  few substances and the port state
will be  required to ensure that foreign
ships comply with Annex II.

     C.  MARPOL Annex V

     The  United   States  Senate  on  5
November 1987 unanimously approved Annex
V  (Regulations    for the Prevention of
Pollution by  Garbage from Ships) of the
International Convention for the Preven-
tion    of  Pollution from Ships (MARPOL
73/78).    Previously,  twenty-eight na-
tions,   representing   48.02%   of  the
world's  tonnage,  had ratified Annex V.
U.S.  ratification  adds  about 4.91% to
the  total  tonnage  and provides enough
tonnage to  meet the 50% requirement and
allow Annex V to enter into force.

     Annex  V  governs  the discharge of
garbage generated  on board vessels into
the  sea.  It  prohibits the disposal of
all plastics,  including but not limited
to  synthetic  ropes,  synthetic fishing
nets, and  plastic garbage bags.  ERegu-
lation 3 (1)(a)].   It further regulates
the disposal  of garbage into the sea by
limiting garbage disposal to 25 nautical
miles for floatable dunnage, lining, and
packing materials, and 12 nautical miles
for food  wastes and  all other garbage.
EReg. 3 (1)(b)].

     There  are  three exceptions to the
discharge provisions:  (1) disposal nec-
essary for  the purpose  of securing the
safety  of  the  ship  or saving life at
sea; (2) escape resulting from damage to
a  ship   or  its   equipment;  and  (3)
accidental  loss  of  synthetic  fishing
nets or synthetic material incidental to
the repair of such nets.  EReg. 63.

     The prohibitions apply to all ships
and to  fixed or  floating platforms en-

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