Federal Law on Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Dumping Waste and other matters
Ata Atun, Clelia Theodolou, Other Committee Members
Federal Law on the Implementation of the International Convention for the
Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Dumping Waste and other matters
It is hereby provided as follows:
1. This Law may be cited as the Federal Law on the Implementation of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matters of 1972, and the Amendment thereof of 1978 and 1998
2.-(1) In this Law, unless the context otherwise requires -
“Amendments” means the amendments of the Convention adopted by the Third and Fifth Consultative Meeting of Contracting Parties by the Resolutions LDC 5(111), LDC 6(111) and LDC 12(V) thereof;
“Convention” means the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter, signed on the 29th of December, 1972, in London, Mexico City, Moscow and Washington as, may be in force from time to time in Cyprus;
“Court” means a court of competent jurisdiction;
“Cyprus” means the United Cyprus Republic;
“Cyprus aircraft” has the meaning assigned to it by the Federal Law on Civil Aviation and Air Space Management;
“Cyprus vessel” has the meaning assigned to it by the Federal Law on Merchant Shipping (Registration of Ships, Sales, and Mortgages);
“Department” means the Department having the responsibility for maritime affairs;
“Directorate” means the Directorate of Maritime Affairs of the Department;
“Gazette” means the federal Official Gazette;
“Member” means the member of the Presidential Council heading the Department.
(2) Words and phrases used in this Law and not defined herein, have the meaning assigned to them by the Convention and the amendments thereto.
3. For the implementation of the provisions of the Convention, the Amendments thereto, this Law and the Regulations made thereunder, the Competent Authority shall be the Directorate.
4. The provisions of the Convention, the Amendments thereto, this Law and the Regulations made thereunder shall apply-
a) to Cyprus vessels and aircraft wherever they are;
b) to foreign vessels and aircraft loading, within the territory of Cyprus, matter intended for dumping; and
c) to vessels, aircraft and fixed or floating platforms, which are within the jurisdiction of Cyprus and which are believed to be engaged in dumping.
5.-(l) Subject to subsection (2) below, every wilful dumping in the sea of any nature or description of waste from vessels, aircraft, fixed or floating platforms and every wilful dumping in the sea of vessels, aircraft, platforms or other artificial marine constructions, is prohibited unless a general or special permit, issued in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Convention and the Amendments, has been granted.
(2) The provisions of the above subsection (1), shall not apply where the dumping is necessary for the reasons prescribed in Article V of the Convention and has been effected in accordance with the requirements of the said section.
6. Any person who has caused pollution of the sea by an unlawful dumping, shall be liable for the restoration of the damage due to the pollution and for the costs for the prevention, restriction or elimination of the pollution, or of any danger of pollution. The owner or the operator of the vessel, the aircraft, the fixed or floating platform in respect of which the pollution was caused, as well as the master of the vessel, the captain of the aircraft or the person in charge of the platform, shall be jointly liable for the whole, and may be sued either jointly with the aforesaid person and/or severally.
7.-(1) The special or general permits for dumping which are provided in subsection (1) of section 5, shall be granted by the Competent Authority in accordance with the models and requirements prescribed by the Convention and the Amendments thereto and after consultation with any other services or organizations, the cooperation of whom might be considered useful.
(2) Fees, prescribed by Order of the Member, shall be paid for the granting of the aforesaid permits.
8. The Competent Authority shall have power to inspect, whenever deemed to be useful, any vessel, aircraft, fixed or floating platform, in respect of which a special or general permit for dumping has been granted, for the purpose of ascertaining compliance with the provisions of the Convention, the Amendments thereto, this Law and the Regulations made thereunder and with the terms of their permits.
Obligation of masters and operators of aircrafts to report dumping incidents
9. The master of a vessel, navigating in the territorial waters of Cyprus, and the operator of an aircraft landed on the ground or flying over the territory of Cyprus, shall have the obligation immediately to report to the Competent Authority any dumping incident which they observe. They shall have the same obligation in case they observe a dumping incident outside the aforesaid areas, if the incident may cause pollution to the coasts of Cyprus.
10.-(1) If, in consequence of any person contravening or suffering any other person to contravene the prohibitive provision of subsection (1) of section 5, pollution is caused, such person shall be guilty of an offence and, in case of conviction, shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or to a fine not exceeding fifteen thousand pounds or to both such sentences.
(2) In the case of vessels or aircraft, the Competent Authority shall have power to prohibit, as the case may be, the departure of a vessel or aircraft in respect of which there is reasonable ground to suspect for the commission of an offence under subsection (1), but such prohibition shall be lifted automatically after twenty four hours from the prohibition, unless in the meantime a Court order prohibiting the departure shall have been issued as provided for in subsection (3).
(3) A Court order prohibiting the departure of such a vessel or aircraft shall be issued, on an application made by the Competent Authority, by any member of the Court, and such order may prohibit the departure of the vessel or aircraft until a final Court judgment for the offence is given and the imposed fine has been paid or until a relevant guarantee of a recognized bank has been deposited in the Court for the amount provided for in the Order, which shall not exceed the maximum amount, according to subsection (1), of the provided fine.
Contraventions and sanctions
11.-(1) A contravention of any provision of the Convention and the Amendments thereto, of this Law and of the Regulations made there under shall be punished, irrespective of whether there exists a criminal or disciplinary liability pursuant to any other legal provision, with an administrative fine not exceeding ten thousand pounds, depending on the seriousness of the contravention.
(2) The administrative fine shall be imposed on the owner or the operator of the vessel, the aircraft, the fixed or floating platform in respect of which the contravention has been committed, or on the master of the vessel, the captain of the aircraft or on the person in charge of the platform, upon a reasoned decision issued by the Competent Authority which confirms the contravention. The criteria for calculating the amount of the administrative fine shall be indicated in directions given by the Member, without this restricting the discretionary power of the Competent Authority which confirms the specific contravention, as long as such power is exercised within the framework of the directions, from deciding freely on the basis of the real facts of each case.
(3) The Competent Authority shall notify the person responsible for the contravention according to the preceding subsection of its decision to impose an administrative fine and, in case of vessels or aircraft, it shall not allow their departure until the administrative fine is paid or a guarantee of an equal amount by a recognized bank and on terms which satisfy the Competent Authority has been deposited.
12.-(1) The owner or the operator of the vessel, the aircraft, and the fixed or floating platform in respect of which the contravention has been committed, or the master of the vessel, the captain of the aircraft, or the person in charge of the platform, shall have the right to a hierarchical recourse to the Member against a decision imposing an administrative fine, within a time limit of thirty days of the notification of the decision in the case of a contravention confirmed within the territory of Cyprus, or within a time limit of sixty days, in the case of a contravention confirmed outside Cyprus.
(2) The hierarchical recourse provided for in subsection (1), shall not suspend the execution of the decision.
(3) The amount of the administrative fine imposed pursuant to section 11 or the bank guarantee shall become payable to the Federal Government, if no action is taken within the period of seventy five days for filing a recourse to the Supreme Court of Cyprus either as from the notification of the decision imposing the administrative fine or, in case of a hierarchical recourse to the Member, as from the notification of the decision of the Member to reject the claim raised in such hierarchical recourse.
Court proceedings to collect fine imposed under section 11
13. In case of failure to pay the administrative fine imposed in accordance with section 11, the Competent Authority shall take court proceedings and shall collect the amount due as a civil debt owed to Cyprus.
Administrative fine, compensations, expenses, a charge on the vessel or aircraft
14. Fines imposed pursuant to sections 10 and 11, as well as any amounts due for the restoration of any damage caused by pollution or paid for the prevention or elimination of the pollution, shall be charged on the vessel or aircraft in connection with which the offence was committed or, as the case may be, the contravention was confirmed, and shall be satisfied in priority against other creditors, subject to their ranking after the last mortgage on such vessel or aircraft.
15. The Presidential Council may make Regulations to be published in the Gazette for the better carrying into effect of the provisions of the Convention and this Law.