|Updated: 03-May-2002||Week of 29 April - 5 May 2002|
Maritime Environmental Protection Strategy
In an active programme pursuing Maritime Environmental Protection, one of NATO's Special Working Groups has developed a common vision and a technical programme to respond to the obligation for naval ships to be increasingly compliant with stringent national and international environmental regulations. An objective for the group is to be a leader in this field, so that navies are at the forefront in the battle against pollution.
The NATO Naval Armaments Group formed Special Working Group 12 in 1992 to share knowledge and expertise across the Alliance on this issue. NATO's Partner nations are also invited to participate. The aim is for naval ships to operate world-wide with minimal potential for regulatory constraints, no inappropriate dependence on shore facilities and no unreasonable costs imposed by environmental regulations. Complying with national and international regulations affects ship operations, endurance, manning, maintenance, operating costs and the quality of life on ships. In response, the basic strategy is to:
Sovereign countries have the right to determine which international regulations
they will ratify regarding environmental requirements. They then determine
the applicability of specific international regulations to their naval
ships through domestic legislation. Through information exchange and cooperation,
Special Working Group 12 promotes the development of capabilities among
navies from NATO and Partner countries to comply with these national and
international environmental regulations and to foster cooperative efforts
for achieving environmentally-sound ships.