Edited by Stephen Tully
Chapter 65: International Maritime Organisation: Convention by Dumping of Wastes and other Matter, 1972
65. International Maritime Organisation: Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and other Matter, 1972 Commentary: Dumping waste generated on land at sea was undertaken for several years by industrialised States until action in the early 1970s. The London Convention (1046 UNTS 120, entry into force 1975) prohibits dumping particular hazardous materials (the ‘black’ list) and requires permits for dumping other materials provided certain conditions are satisfied (the ‘grey’ list). The extracts below contain all amendments which have entered into force. Annex I identifies various compounds, plastics, crude oil and other matter and also defines ‘industrial waste’ and ‘incineration at sea’. Annex II lists substances or materials requiring special care. Annex III identifies characteristics of the waste matter, dumping sites, methods of deposit and general criteria for issuing permits. See further, IMO, ‘Guidelines for the Assessment of Wastes or Other Matter that May Be Considered for Dumping’ (generic guidelines applicable to all material which is acceptable for ocean disposal) and complementary waste-specific guidelines: www.londonconvention.org. A 1996 Protocol (IMO Doc LC/SM1/6, not yet in force) will replace the London Convention with several major changes. Article 3 thereof introduces the precautionary approach to ensure that ‘appropriate preventative measures are taken when there is reason to believe that wastes or other matter introduced into the marine environment are likely to cause harm even when there is no conclusive evidence to prove a causal relation between inputs and their effects’. Article 3 also provides that ‘the polluter should, in principle,...
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