Blue Fund to Combat Ship Pollution
A proposed “Blue Fund” to help combat illicit ship pollution in the Mediterranean is set to be studied by States and stakeholders working to protect the Mediterranean marine environment.
According to a press note from International Maritime Organization (IMO), this was agreed at a meeting of the regional network for law enforcement officials of the Mediterranean, known as Mediterranean Network of Law Enforcement Officials relating to MARPOL within the framework of the Barcelona Convention (MENELAS) - organized by REMPEC, the IMO-administered pollution emergency response center in the Mediterranean.
The meeting in Valletta, Malta (15-16 October) involved 13 Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention (12 Mediterranean coastal States and the European Union) as well as 5 regional and international organisations.
Participants discussed new administrative and judicial cooperation tools, such as the harmonization of pecuniary sanctions (penalties) for illicit ship pollution discharges among countries in the Mediterranean.
They shared experiences in effective law enforcement practices and agreed to continue work on a draft common marine oil pollution detection/investigation report.
They also agreed to review existing applicable sanctions at national level with regard to illicit ship pollution discharges, and to prepare a draft decision applying criteria for a common minimum level of fines for each offense provided for under the Annexes to IMO’s MARPOL treaty.