European Commission to review Port Reception Facilities Directive next year

The European Union Directive adopted in 2000 required European Union (EU) Member States’ ports to provide “adequate” port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues. Although this Directive, which came into force in late 2002, was far from perfect, it represented a great step forward in Europe taking this issue seriously.

Besides its provisions requiring ports to provide reception facilities for the type of vessels normally calling at its berths, as well as detailed rules for waste management and handling plans, the Directive also has a revision clause for 2005. With this in mind INTERTANKO has been monitoring EU Member States’ performance in following up the Directive, including close monitoring of the various experiences INTERTANKO members have gained when calling at various European ports since the Directive came into force.

This information has been passed on to the Commission in various forms and the Commission has now picked up on the issue and asked the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) to undertake a complete evaluation of the state of port reception facilities in EU Member States. In preparation for a possible revision of the Directive and/or of its implementation by Member States, INTERTANKO welcomes the concept of working closely with EMSA on this issue.

INTERTANKO’s Environmental Committee discussed this issue at its last meeting in September and is also formulating comments in preparation for the revision next year. However, any additional comments from members regarding the Port Facilities Directive and its implementation would be appreciated.

Contact: Tim Wilkins