MARINE AND COASTAL ENVIRONMENT DIVISION
The following information will help you comply with our laws and regulations for keeping the marine environment safe and clean.
Sea pollution is viewed with great severity. The MCED will initiate a criminal investigation and legal prosecution against alleged violators - both captains and vessel owners. Fines imposed are high.
Please note that the law does not take into consideration mitigating circumstances such as whether a spill is reported promptly by the ship to the authorities. A ship that is allegedly involved in a spill may be detained in harbour until the investigation is completed and/or until a financial guarantee has been submitted to cover possible clean-up expenses, damages and fines.
If sea pollution does occur, notify the authorities immediately. It is strictly prohibited to attempt clean-up by using dispersants, detergents or any other kind of cleaning agent.
Captains are obligated to report any observation of oil spills - large or small - regardless of personal involvement. This refers to any discharge of oil, oily water (bilge or ballast) and oily residues. Observed discharges of chemicals, damaged cargo and litter or waste must also be reported. Reports should be directed to the port control. The reports can be made by V.H.F., telephone, telefax or in person by your agent as well.
Reception facilities for oil and oily water residues: the Ports of Haifa, Ashdod and Eilat have reception facilities for oil and oily residues. The charge for this service is already included in the port fees. Sludge may be discharged to reception facilities upon payment. Please call your agent to arrange reception of your bilge and slop. Ballast water from tankers - clean as well as oily - must be transferred to reception facilities.
Ballast water control:
In order to prevent the importation of non-native organisms into Israeli coastal waters and harbours, all ships bound for an Israeli port must exchange any ballast water not taken on in the open ocean, beyond any continental shelf, as follows:
- Ships calling at Israel's Mediterranean ports must carry out the ballast exchange in the Atlantic, if possible
- Ships calling at the port of Eilat must carry out the ballast exchange outside the Red Sea. Captains should bear in mind the great significance of this environmentally fragile area to Israeli tourism.
Ships, which fail to prove compliance with this requirement, will not be permitted to pump out their ballast in Israeli territorial waters.
- A record of ballast water exchange should be entered in the ship's log or in another suitable document and presented upon request to the marine pollution inspectors.
- Disposal of garbage and litter of any kind into the sea is strictly prohibited in Israeli territorial waters. All ports are provided with garbage collection barges. The charge for this service is already included in the port fees. Please call your agent to arrange for the disposal of your garbage.
- Over-the-side painting while moored in harbour or on anchor is prohibited.
- Oil record book: please make sure that this is properly filled out and signed.
- MARPOL Convention: all the above requirements are in addition to the international requirements specified in the MARPOL Convention.