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Environment and pollution - an introductionLiability for pollution is a relatively modern concern. Most laws in this field have come into being since the late 1960s following the first major tanker spill, the Torrey Canyon incident off  the south coast of England.  It prompted the growth of major environmental pressure groups and governments represented at the United Nations undertook a whole range of new environmental commitments. Subsequent oil pollution disasters such as the Amoco Cadiz off Brittany in 1978, the Exxon Valdez in Alaska in 1989 and, more recently, the Erika and Prestige incidents off Western Europe resulted in further legal changes and greater financial liability for pollution from ships.

Today even minor pollution incidents commonly produce very significant financial losses for ship owners and their insurers, both in the form of compensation claims and by way of criminal fines. A serious oil spill is a crisis which shipping executives commonly fear more than any other casualty, not least because of the considerable publicity that is often generated by them.

Pollution liability regimes were the first to introduce compulsory insurance in the maritime sector along with rights of direct action against liability insurers.
Insurance against pollution liability risks is therefore a very important feature of Club cover, not only to enable shipowners to comply with compulsory insurance requirements but also to protect them against some of their biggest potential exposures.

We have focused on key topics on this page:


Sulphur Emissions

Eva Kelesidou
Claims Executive
Telephone +30 210 429 1853
Mobile +30 6941 583 682 

Environment and Pollution - Sulphur emissions

Web alerts on this topic:


Ballast Water

Rebecca Hamra 

Ballast Water Management Cover
Claims Director 
Telephone +1 646 753 9022
Mobile +1 646 321 2146

Key documents

  • General information on ballast water management: here
  • Text of the Ballast Water Management Convention: here
  • USCG’s latest memo regarding extensions for BWMS: here
  • EPA’s 2013 VGP: here


Chinese Oil Pollution

Environment and pollution - Chinese oil pollution

Nick Dimokidis
Senior Claims Executive
Telephone +65 6506 2880
Mobile +65 9298 8387


Useful links

  • Handout on Chinese oil pollution: here
  • List of Approved SPROs/Consortia/Agents: here
  • Circulars and web alerts on this topic: here
  • Revised IG Sample SPRO contract: here


US pollution 

Rebecca Hamra 
Claims Director 
Telephone +1 646 753 9022
Mobile +1 646 321 2146

One time port waivers for VRPs and NTVRPs in the US



Matt Bevan  
Claims Executive 
Telephone +44 20 7522 7514
Mobile +44 7768 936 437 


Club publications on MARPOL


MARPOL information sheet  

Sulphur reduction – 
the club’s perspective

 Marpol fines in 

the US, September 


Web alert: Australia -

MARPOL Annex-V violations 
and the possible consequences, 
24 February 2015

Loss Prevention - Regulation update 2018

 Standard Safety October 2014