Marine Pollution Prevention

The issue of preventing and or minimizing ecological pollution by the shipping industry and saving the beaches and marine life is of great concern to Liberia, especially as a Coastal, Port, and Flag State and a founding member of the International Maritime Organization (IMO). As a Flag State and member of the IMO, Liberia, through LiMA, is signatory to the following conventions:

1. The IMO International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as modified by the Protocol of 1978 relating thereto (MARPOL 73/78), which is the most important convention regulating and preventing marine pollution by ships. It covers accidental and operational oil pollution as well as pollution by chemicals, goods in packaged form, sewage, garbage and air pollution.

2. 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), (Part XII: Articles 192 – 237) which addresses Protection and Preservation of the Marine Environment and gives basic obligations to prevent, reduce and control pollution from land-based sources; pollution from sea-bed activities subject to national jurisdiction; pollution from activities in the Area; pollution by dumping; pollution from vessels; and pollution from or through the atmosphere.

As a coastal State with several ports, the Liberian Government, through the Liberia Maritime Authority, the Environmental Protection Agency of Liberia and other relevant Government Agencies, regulates and fights environmental pollution in the territorial waters of Liberia. Protection of the marine environment is of critical importance to the Government. Efforts are underway to raise awareness amongst Liberian nationals to ensure improved protection of our waterways and marine life.

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