Written Answers. - Statutory Instruments.

Ruairí Quinn


233 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources the proposed statutory instruments being prepared in, or under the auspices of, his Department; the proposed effect of each; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19616/00]

The information requested by the Deputy in relation to proposed statutory instruments being prepared in or under the auspices of my Department is set out as follows:

Maritime Safety and Environment

1)Draft Merchant Shipping (Passenger Ship Construction & Life Saving Appliance) Rules, ships of various classes. The proposed statutory instrument will set out construction rules and rules governing the type of life saving appliances to be carried on board for passenger ships in various classes – mainly 11A-VI.

2)Draft merchant shipping (radio installation) rules and merchant shipping (radio installations survey) rules. The proposed statutory instrument will give effect to amendments to Chapter IV of the Safety of Life at Sea Convention, SOLAS, and will extend the GMDSS, global maritime distress and safety system, to vessels between 150 and 300 tons. The MS (Radio Installation Survey) Rules go hand in hand with the radio installation rules and are required to enable the Department to legally carry out surveys on GMDSS ships.

3)Draft merchant shipping (load line) rules. The proposed statutory instrument will give effect to amendments to the 1966 International Convention on Load Lines. It will provide mainly for the structural survey of vessels to establish their sea worthiness and the issue of load line certificates which are required internationally.

4)Draft Fishing Vessel Regulations (12 to 24 metres category and six to 12 metres category). The proposed statutory instruments will set out vessel construction regulations and life-saving appliance regulations for fishing vessels in the 12 to 24 metre and six to 12 metre categories. The proposed regulations are based on the recommendations of the Fishing Vessel Review Group.
5)Draft passenger boat safety regulations. The proposed statutory instrument will set out safety regulations for passenger boats including sea-angling boats.
6)The following instruments are necessary to give effect to the amendments contained in the Oil Pollution of the Sea (Civil Liability and Compensation) (Amendment) Act, 1998, and will replace existing instruments made under the 1988 Act which is the Principal Act: Oil Pollution of the Sea (Civil Liability and Compensation) (Insurance of Ships) Regulations, 2000. Oil Pollution of the Sea (Civil Liability and Compensation) (Convention Countries) Order, 2000
The regulations provide that ships specified in section 16 of the 1988 Act, that is, those which carry 2,000 tonnes or more of crude or fuel oil shall have insurance against pollution damage which will meet the requirements of the Minister in accordance with section 10 of the 1988 Act as amended by section 6 of the 1998 Act – namely, the revised levels set out in the 1992 Protocol to the Civil Liability Convention). The order sets out the countries which have to date accepted the Civil Liability Convention and the Fund Convention as amended by the 1992 Protocols.
7)It is also proposed to introduce a statutory instrument to formalise the designation of north west European waters as a special area under Annex 1 of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL 73/78). Special area status covers the North Sea, the Irish Sea, Celtic Sea, the English Channel and the Continental Shelf west of Ireland and Scotland. With effect from 1 August 1999, it means a total prohibition on the discharge of processed bilge water from machinery spaces.
Marine Leisure and Research
8)Draft Merchant Shipping (Personal Watercraft and Fast Powercraft) Regulations, 2000, to regulate the use of personal watercraft (for example jetskis) and fast powercraft, in relation to age restrictions, carriage of safety equipment and the making of bye-laws by statutory authorities. Expected to be in place by year end.
Aquaculture Policy Division
9)European Communities (Aquaculture Animals and Fish) (Placing on the Market and Control of Certain Diseases) Regulations, 2000. The effect of the regulations will be to transpose Council Directive 98/45/EEC concerning the animal health conditions governing the placing on the market of aquaculture animals and products.
Coastal Zone Administration
10)Work is under way to replace the Skin Diving for Shell Fish Bye Law No. 533 (1966) to allow licensed aquaculturalists to harvest their own licensed produce by skin diving. The aim is to have this done within a few months. It is not possible at this stage to say if any other statutory instruments will be required in relation to CZAD matters.
Sea Fisheries Policy
11)The preparation and implementation of statutory instruments is an ongoing requirement for the effective regulation and management of certain fisheries which would typically involve either the setting of boat quotas and/or the opening or closure of fisheries for conservation purposes.
Petroleum Affairs Division
12)Possible need for primary legislation to give effect to certain provisions relating to access to upstream gas pipelines under Directive 98/30/EC of 22 June 1998 concerning common rules for the internal market in natural gas. The advice of the Attorney General's office is being sought at present.
Sea Fisheries Administration
13)Regulations will be made in respect of the Management of Shellfish Production Areas, amending the European Commission (Live Bivalve Molluscs) (Health and Conditions for Production and Placing on the Market) Regulation, 1996, (S.I. No. 147 of 1996).