The Clean Cruise Ship Act
With current laws, a ship can dump sewage into the ocean as long as it's more than 3 miles from shore. Consider that when you're on a cruise ship deck, you can see land from about 9 miles away. So the ship could turn its nose towards land, drive in 2/3rds the distance, and then dump its sewage, perfectly legally.
With ships carrying over 3,000 passengers, this can be quite a lot of trash and sewage dumped directly into the ocean. That is why The Clean Cruise Ship Act is being worked on. S793 / HR1636 expands that limit to 12 miles - beyond visible sight - and also allows the coast guard to monitor both the discharge of trash as well as inspect the pollution control equipment on the ship.
Many of us love cruising because we love being on the ocean, with its fresh breezes. We love visiting clean, natural tropical islands, and enjoying the beaches. We probably wouldn't enjoy those beaches as much if garbage from our boat were drifting up on shore.
It's in our own best interests as responsible passengers to ensure that the vacation we take today does not damage or destroy the environment we are going to visit. Be sure to talk to your senators and reps and discuss this act!
Clean Cruise Ship Act Details
Cruising Tips and Information Main Page