Transport Canada has recently implemented new discharge requirements for cruise ships in Canadian waters, aiming to protect marine habitats and prevent vessel-sourced pollution. These regulations have now become mandatory, replacing the previous voluntary measures.

Under the Interim Order Respecting the Discharge of Sewage and the Release of Greywater by Cruise Ships in Canadian Waters, cruise ships certified to carry more than 100 people with overnight accommodations must adhere to the following guidelines:

1️⃣ Sewage Discharge:

No discharge of greywater and sewage within 3 nautical miles from shore, ice-shelf, or fast ice anywhere in Canada.

Treatment of greywater with sewage is required when discharging between 3 and 12 nautical miles from shore south of 60 North. The discharge must be free of solids, sheen, discoloration, and residue on nearby shorelines.

Treatment of sewage with an approved marine sanitation device is mandatory when discharging between 3 and 12 nautical miles from shore, ice-shelf, or fast ice anywhere in Canada. The discharge must have a fecal coliform count of 14/100 milliliters or less, and should not contain solids, sheen, discoloration, sewage sludge, or residue beneath the water surface or on nearby shorelines.

2️⃣ Reporting and Record Keeping:

Authorized Representatives of cruise ships must report any sewage or greywater releases to a Marine Safety Inspector, especially in cases where it is necessary to save lives, secure the ship’s safety, avoid ship loss, or due to equipment damage.

Detailed records must be maintained for all discharges or releases in Canadian waters, including reasons, circumstances, officer’s signatures, and relevant information. Record books can be in paper or electronic format, written in English or French, and must be kept on board for a minimum of 2 years.

These regulations align with the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), ensuring that Canada upholds international pollution prevention standards.

As a company specializing in environmental compliance solutions, EMH Systems Ltd and its innovative ECAP platform are well-positioned to assist cruise ship operators in meeting these new requirements seamlessly. ECAP provides comprehensive monitoring, reporting, and data management tools to ensure compliance with the regulations, simplifying the process and reducing administrative burden for cruise ship operators.

For more information or assistance in implementing these new regulations, feel free to reach out to EMH Systems Ltd. Together, we can protect our precious marine ecosystems and create a sustainable future for the cruise industry.