A new code to reduce marine pollution by oil tankers was announced recently by the International Chamber of Shipping. The ICS, which comprises ship-owner associations from 25 countries, is inviting oil tanker charterers and owners worldwide to accept a code that embodies some provisions of the 1973 Marine Pollution Convention without waiting for the necessary governmental action. In effect, the ICS has selected those provisions that it believes are enforceable now while omitting those which, for technical or other reasons, are not immediately practicable. Nevertheless, the code remains a voluntary one. As such, it provides ample "escape clauses" for any signatory wishing to sidestep its obligations in order to obtain a profitable charter. The ICS Code is based on Annex I of the 1973 Marine Pollution Convention, which is concerned almost entirely with pollution derived from discharges connected with the routine operation of a ship. It is not concerned with pollution resulting from accidents of the Torrey Canyon variety. A particular feature of the proposal is the recognition of the need for cooperation between the tanker owner and the charterer. The Chamber hopes that, in practice, acceptance by one party to a charter will lead the other party to accept the code as well. The creation of the ICS Code also shows some of the anomalies confronting even voluntary attempts to curb marine pollution. The American Institute of Merchant shipping was unable to join in discussions because to do so would have contravened the anti-trust laws. Meanwhile the code has got off to a good start with immediate acceptances by Shell and BP.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Development Agency Centre

    800 rene-Leveque Boulevard West, Suite 600
    Montreal, Quebec H3B 1X9,   Canada 
  • Publication Date: 1976

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00142624
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transportation Development Agency Centre
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 15 1976 12:00AM