THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE
COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,
Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community,
and in particular Article 80(2) thereof,
Having regard to the
proposal from the Commission(1),
Having regard to the Opinion of
the Economic and Social Committee(2),
Having regard to the Opinion
of the Committee of the Regions(3),
Acting in accordance with the
procedure referred to in Article 251 of the Treaty(4), and in the light of the joint
text approved by the Conciliation Committee on 18 July 2000,
policy on the environment aims at a high level of protection. It is based on the
precautionary principle and the principles that the polluter should pay and that
preventive action should be taken.
important field of Community action in maritime transport concerns the reduction of the
pollution of the seas. This can be achieved through compliance with international
conventions, codes and resolutions while maintaining the freedom of navigation as
provided for by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the freedom of
providing services as provided for in Community law.
(3) The Community is seriously concerned
about the pollution of the seas and coastlines of the Member States caused by discharges
of waste and cargo residues from ships, and in particular about the implementation of
the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as
modified by the Protocol of 1978 relating thereto (Marpol 73/78) which regulates what
wastes can be discharged from ships into the marine environment and requires States
Parties to ensure the provision of adequate reception facilities in ports. All Member
States have ratified Marpol 73/78.
protection of the marine environment can be enhanced by reducing discharges into the sea
of ship-generated waste and cargo residues. This can be achieved by improving the
availability and use of reception facilities and by improving the enforcement regime. In
its Resolution of 8 June 1993 on a common policy on safe seas(5), the Council included
among its priority actions the development of availability and use of reception
facilities within the Community.
Directive 95/21/EC of 19 June 1995 concerning the enforcement, in respect of shipping
using Community ports and sailing in the waters under the jurisdiction of the Member
States, of international standards for ship safety, pollution prevention and shipboard
living and working conditions (port State control)(6) provides that ships posing an
unreasonable threat of harm to the marine environment may not proceed to sea.
(6) Pollution of the seas by its very nature
has transboundary implications. In view of the subsidiarity principle, action at
Community level is the most effective way of ensuring common environmental standards for
ships and ports throughout the Community.
In view of the proportionality principle, a Directive is the appropriate legal
instrument, as it provides a framework for the Member States' uniform and compulsory
application of environmental standards, while leaving each Member State the right to
decide which implementation tools best fit its internal system.
(8) Consistency with existing regional
agreements, such as the 1974/1992 Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment
in the Baltic Sea Area, should be ensured.
In the interest of improving pollution prevention and avoiding distortion of
competition, the environmental requirements should apply to all ships, irrespective of
the flag they fly, and adequate reception facilities should be made available in all
ports of the Community.
(10) Adequate port
reception facilities should meet the needs of users, from the largest merchant ship to
the smallest recreational craft, and of the environment, without causing undue delay to
the ships using them. The obligation to ensure the availability of adequate port
reception facilities leaves the Member States with a high degree of freedom to arrange
the reception of waste in the most suitable manner and permits them, inter alia, to
provide fixed reception installations or to appoint service providers bringing to the
ports mobile units for the reception of waste when needed. This obligation also implies
the obligation to provide all services and/or other accompanying arrangements necessary
for the proper and adequate use of these facilities.
(11) Adequacy of facilities can be improved
by up-to-date waste reception and handling plans established in consultation with the
(12) The effectiveness of
port reception facilities can be improved by requiring ships to notify their need to use
reception facilities. Such notification would also provide information for effectively
planned waste management. Waste from fishing vessels and from recreational craft
authorised to carry no more than 12 passengers may be handled by the port reception
facilities without prior notification.
Discharges of ship-generated waste at sea can be reduced by requiring all ships to
deliver their waste to port reception facilities before leaving the port. In order to
reconcile the interest of the smooth operation of maritime transport with the protection
of the environment, exceptions to this requirement should be possible taking into
account the sufficiency of the dedicated storage capacity on board, the possibility to
deliver at another port without risk of discharge at sea and specific delivery
requirements adopted in accordance with international law.
(14) In view of the "polluter pays"
principle, the costs of port reception facilities, including the treatment and disposal
of ship-generated waste, should be covered by ships. In the interest of protecting the
environment, the fee system should encourage the delivery of ship-generated waste to
ports instead of discharge into the sea. This can be facilitated by providing that all
ships contribute to the costs for the reception and handling of ship-generated waste so
as to reduce the economic incentives to discharge into the sea. In view of the
subsidiarity principle, Member States should, in accordance with their national laws and
current practices, retain the powers to establish whether and in what proportion the
fees related to quantities actually delivered by the ships will be included in the cost
recovery systems for using port reception facilities. Charges for using these facilities
should be fair, non-discriminatory and transparent.
(15) Ships producing reduced quantities of
ship-generated waste should be treated more favourably in the cost recovery systems.
Common criteria would facilitate the identification of such ships.
(16) In order to avoid undue burden for the
parties concerned, ships engaged in scheduled traffic with frequent and regular port
calls may be exempted from certain obligations deriving from this Directive where there
is sufficient evidence that there are arrangements to ensure the delivery of the waste
and the payment of fees.
(17) Cargo residues
should be delivered to port reception facilities in accordance with Marpol 73/78. Marpol
73/78 requires cargo residues to be delivered to port reception facilities to the extent
necessary to comply with the tank cleaning requirements. Any fee for such delivery
should be paid by the user of the reception facility, the user being normally specified
in the contractual arrangements between the parties involved or in other local
(18) It is necessary to undertake
targeted inspections in order to verify compliance with this Directive. The number of
such inspections, as well as the penalties imposed, should be sufficient to deter
non-compliance with this Directive. For reasons of efficiency and cost-effectiveness,
such inspections may be undertaken within the framework of Directive 95/21/EC, when
(19) Member States should ensure a
proper administrative framework for the adequate functioning of the port reception
facilities. Under Marpol 73/78, allegations of inadequate port reception facilities
should be transmitted to the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). The same
information could be simultaneously transmitted to the Commission for information
(20) An information system for the
identification of polluting or potentially polluting ships would facilitate the
enforcement of this Directive and would be helpful in evaluating the implementation
thereof. The SIRENAC information system established under the Paris Memorandum of
Understanding on Port State Control provides a large amount of the additional
information needed for that purpose.
(21) It is
necessary that a Committee consisting of representatives of the Member States assist the
Commission in the effective application of this Directive. Since the measures necessary
for implementing this Directive are measures of a general scope within the meaning of
Article 2 of Council Decision 1999/468/EC of 28 June 1999 laying down the procedures for
the exercise of implementing powers conferred on the Commission(7), such measures should
be adopted in accordance with the regulatory procedure provided for in Article 5 of that
(22) Certain provisions of this
Directive may, without broadening its scope, be amended in accordance with that
procedure in order to take into account Community or IMO measures which enter into force
in the future so as to ensure their harmonised implementation,
(1) OJ C 271, 31.8.1998, p. 79 and OJ C 148, 28.5.1999, p. 7.
(2) OJ C 138, 18.5.1999, p. 12.
(3) OJ C 198, 14.7.1999, p. 27.
(4) Opinion of the European Parliament of 11 February
1999 (OJ C 150, 28.5.1999, p. 432), confirmed on 16 September 1999, Council Common
Position of 8 November 1999 (OJ C 10, 13.1.2000, p. 14) and Decision of the European
Parliament of 14 March 2000 (not yet published in the Official Journal). Decision of
the European Parliament of 6 September 2000 and Decision of the Council of 14
(5) OJ C 271, 7.10.1993, p. 1.
(6) OJ L 157, 7.7.1995, p. 1. Directive as last amended
by Directive 98/42/EC (OJ L 184, 27.6.1998, p. 40).
(7) OJ L 184, 17.7.1999, p. 23.