Owing to the international nature of the shipping industry, continued attention is required at national, EU and international level to prevent pollution of the marine environment.
My Department has consistently taken a full and active part at EU and international level in this regard.
Ireland led the campaign at the International Maritime Organisation, IMO, to have the Irradiated Nuclear Fuels, INF, Code made mandatory and following this, the EU adopted a directive requiring all vessels carrying such materials bound for or leaving a Community port to comply with strict notification and controls. In accordance with the EU directive on port state control, inspections relevant to pollution prevention, safety related matters and crew ability and competence are carried out on foreign vessels including tankers entering our ports. When deficiencies are noted, the vessel may be detained until the problems have been rectified.