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PUBLICATIONS, Structural and Cohesion Policies

Port reception facilities for ship waste: Collecting waste from ships in ports [EU Legislation in Progress]

Written by Marketa Pape (2nd edition, updated on 7.6.2019),

Yellow garbage bin on the dock.
© MrPreecha / Fotolia

Marine litter and pollution put the marine environment at risk. While a great proportion of marine litter originates from land-based sources, limiting waste discharges from ships also plays an essential role in efforts to preserve marine and coastal ecosystems. Based on international law, EU legislation requires vessels to bring the waste they generate on voyages to waste-reception facilities in port, and obliges EU ports to provide such facilities to ships using the port.

Despite these developments, discharges at sea continue. In January 2018, the European Commission put forward a new legislative proposal seeking to improve the collection of ship waste while ensuring efficient maritime transport operations in ports. Interinstitutional negotiations concluded on 13 December 2018. The final text was adopted by the Parliament on 13 March 2019 and then by the Council on 29 March. The Directive was then signed on 17 April by the presidents of the two institutions and will be published in the Official Journal shortly.


Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on port reception facilities for the delivery of waste from ships, repealing Directive 2000/59/EC and amending Directive 2009/16/EC and Directive 2010/65/EU
Committee responsible: Transport and Tourism (TRAN) COM(2018) 033 of 16.1.2018
Associated committee: Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) 2018/0139(COD)
Rapporteur: Gesine Meissner (ALDE, Germany) Ordinary legislative procedure (COD) (Parliament and Council on equal footing – formerly ‘co-decision’)
Shadow rapporteurs: Deirdre Clune (EPP, Ireland)
Maria Grapini (ALDE, Romania)
Peter van Dalen (ECR, Netherlands)
Tania González Peñas (GUE/NGL, Spain)
Keith Taylor (Greens/EFA, United Kingdom)
Rosa D’Amato (EFDD, Italy)
Rolandas Paksas (EFDD, Lithuania)
Procedure completed. Awaiting publication in the Official Journal


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