In 2000 the European Community adopted Directive 2000/59/EC on port reception facilities, with the aim of substantially reducing discharges of ship-generated waste and cargo residues into the sea. This Directive especially aims at reducing illegal discharges from ships using ports in the EU, by improving the availability and use of port reception facilities, thereby enhancing the protection of the marine environment.
The cycle of visits to the Member States in relation to Directive 2000/59/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 November 2000 on port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues, as amended, was initiated in 2007.
The full cycle of visits to all Member States was completed in 2011. No further visits are currently envisaged.
The purpose of the Directive is set out in Article 1:
The purpose of this Directive is to reduce the discharges of ship-generated waste and cargo residues into the sea, especially illegal discharges, from ships using ports in the Community, by improving the availability and use of port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues, thereby enhancing the protection of the marine environment.
The objective of the visit is to view and document the system in place in the Member State used for implementing the requirements of the Directive. The visits will in particular examine the following:
- The way in which the Directive has been transposed and implemented in operational terms.
- The provisions for ensuring that all vessels within the scope of the Directive deliver their ship-generated waste and cargo residues to port reception facilities.
- The measures for ensuring that vessels which are excluded from the scope of the Directive, deliver their ship-generated waste and cargo residues in a manner consistent, in so far reasonable and practicable, with the Directive.
- That the availability of port reception facilities in the ports of the Member State are adequate to serve the needs of the vessels normally using the port without causing undue delay to the vessels has been ensured.
- That appropriate reception and handling plans have been developed and implemented for each port of the Member State.
- That an approval and monitoring mechanism for the reception and handling plans is operated by the Member State.
- That the required notifications are sent, received, reviewed, and verified as well as establishing that this system is monitored by the Member State.
- That the Member State has ensured that the costs of the port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues, including the treatment and disposal of the waste, is recovered through the collection by a fee system which is fair, transparent, non-discriminatory and reflects the costs of the facilities in place.
- That a system of exemptions is in place.
- That a system of enforcement and sanctions is in place.