Yacht club and marina launch owners are under increased public and government pressure regarding several environmental issues. There are a variety of concerns regarding the proper disposal of waste and toxins, many of which can be found in businesses that run primarily along waterways. The improper and illegal dumping of waste into waters inhabited by marine life, as well as those people who swim, fish or otherwise enter the water for recreational purposes brings to light the reason for even more stringent regulations, laws and bylaws.
Fines can be exceedingly high, but it is imperative that these waters be protected against any reckless dumping, which can result in costly clean ups. Self-imposed safety measures can go a long way towards making these types of businesses less prone to violations, and yacht club insurance can help to pay heavy fines when an unfortunate accident does occur.
Sewage and waste disposal a major concern
In the United States, several federal agencies and laws have some jurisdiction over pollution from ships in U.S. waters. States and local government agencies also have responsibilities for ship-related pollution in certain situations. Some of the most important steps taken were to enact the Marine Plastic Pollution Research and Control Act, as well as the Marine Debris Research, Prevention and Reduction Act.
The Marine Plastic Pollution Research and Control Act (MPPRCA) requires the EPA, in consultation with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), to study the adverse effects of improper disposal of plastics on the environment and on waste disposal, and various methods to reduce or eliminate such adverse effects.
The Marine Debris Research, Prevention and Reduction Act (MDRPRA) was passed to establish programs within the NOAA and the United States Coast Guard to help identify, determine sources of, assess, reduce, and prevent marine debris and its adverse impacts on the marine environment and navigation safety.
In addition, on December 20, 2012, President Obama signed the Marine Debris Act Amendments of 2012 to re-authorize and amend the MDRPRA to address the adverse impacts of marine debris on the U.S. economy, the marine environment, and navigation safety.
Vessel discharges are a serious concern
Significant environmental impacts to coastal and ocean ecosystems occur via direct pollution from recreational, commercial, and military vessels. Various pollutants from these sources include bilge water, ballast water, anti-fouling paints, hazardous materials, and municipal and commercial garbage, along with other wastes. Yacht club owners have a tremendous responsibility, and fortunately, they are provided with help and relief in the form of yacht club insurance for just these kinds of exposures.