Prevention of Pollution by Garbage from Ships - Amended MARPOL Annex V in force from 1 January 2013

December 2012

PDF Version

Updated April 2013

IMO's Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) at its sixty-second session in July 2011 adopted the amendments to Annex V which enter into force on 1 January 2013. The revised Annex V prohibits the discharge of all garbage into the sea, except as provided otherwise (see IMO's overview of the revised MARPOL Annex V discharge provisions).

Associated guidelines have also been adopted: 2012 Guidelines for the Implementation of MARPOL Annex V and 2012 Guidelines for the Development of Garbage Management Plans.

Further background and information, including links to the amended MARPOL Annex V and the two 2012 Guideline documents, can be found via the IMO website page on Prevention of Pollution by Garbage from Ships at:


Update April 2013

On 26 February 2013 the USCG issued a Policy Letter (CG-CVC 13-01) Interim Guidance For Revised Marpol Annex V Implementation. The letter is designed to address the fact that U.S. regulations have yet to be updated to reflect the requirements of MARPOl Annex V but, as the letter advises, this does not exempt vessels from meeting the MARPOL requirements. Aimed at both U.S. flagged vessels and foreign flagged vessels navigating in U.S. waters, the letter points out the differences between the U.S. regulations and MARPOL Annex V requirements. It also reminds that under Regulation 6 of Annex V, dealing with special areas where requirements are more restrictive, the Wider Caribbean Region is a designated special area and the requirements which apply to that area are implemented in U.S. waters.

The Interim Guidance can be viewed and downloaded below.