environmentCommercial ship operators recognize the importance of minimizing the impact of vessel activity in ports and communities in which they operate.  

The marine industry is perhaps the most international of the world's industries, serving more than 90 per cent of global trade.  

Shipping is one of the most regulated industries around the world and advocates for the development of international standards on safety, security and environmental issues. The International Maritime Organization is the United Nations specialized agency responsible for improving marine safety and preventing pollution from ships.


Marine Pollution and Discharges

Marine discharges and pollutants are regulated primarily by Transport Canada, Fisheries and Oceans, and Environment Canada.

In Canada, regulatory action has focused on a number of key areas of marine pollution.

Please select the links below for details on these areas: 

The IMO's International Conventon for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) continues to address pollution from ships by oil; by noxious liquid substances carried in bulk; harmful substances carried by sea in packaged form; sewage, garbage and the prevention of air pollution from ships. MARPOL has greatly contributed to the significant decrease in pollution from international shipping and applies to 99% of the world's merchant fleet.

Since 1983 all new oil tankers have been fitted with segregated ballast tanks and later in 1996 onwards all oil tankers were required to be fitted with a double hull.

Transport Canada is now seeking input on Canada's adoption of the 2010 Protocol to the Hazardous Noxious Substance (HNS) Convention.