News & Events

Related Pages

EPA settles $248,500 in penalties for violations of VGP requirements in BWMS procedures

Technical Newsletter as on 20 February 2024


On 12 February 2024 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has settled with a US-based Shipping company over claims of violations of EPA’s Vessel General Permit, issued under the Clean Water Act.

Under the terms of the settlements, the company will pay $248,500 in penalties for claims of violations by two of the company’s ships, involving untreated ballast water discharge, vessel inspections, and discharge monitoring. Read more via News releases in EPA website.

Let’s take a closer look at the findings

According to the EPA, the following violations were identified for the two vessels:

Vessel A:

  • Between January 2019 and August 2020, Vessel A discharged untreated ballast water eight times in water subject to the VGP.
  • Vessel A also failed to conduct comprehensive annual vessel inspections at least once every 12 months in 2020 and 2021.

Agreed upon penalty for Vessel A: $111,250

Vessel B:

  • From May 2018 to September 2020, Vessel B discharged untreated ballast water seven times.
  • Vessel B also failed to report biological indicator compliance monitoring after a treated ballast water discharge in December 2021.
  • Additionally, Vessel B failed to conduct comprehensive annual vessel inspections at least once every 12 months in 2018, 2019, and 2021.

Agreed upon penalty for Vessel B: $137,250

Both vessels are general cargo ships that have been in operation since 2015. As non-recreational and non-military vessels over 79 feet that operate in waters of the United States, these vessels were subject to the Vessel General Permit.

As stated by EPA’s Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Martha Guzman, “The Vessel General Permit is a key element of our nation’s Clean Water Act, and the failure of shipping companies to comply with permit requirements can significantly harm our nation’s already-challenged waters."


Maritec provides a unique one-stop solution to meet your Discharge Water Compliance requirements as per VGP 2013. Benefit from:

  • Risk Mitigation: We help clients identify Testing Frequency for each vessel according to VGP requirements.
  • Budget Control and Reduced Superintendent Workload:  We help monitor the voyage to find the most economical ports for sampling/testing.
  • Global Network: We offer testing worldwide for convenient sampling and reporting.
  • Technical Support: We offer Audit & Crew Training and due-diligence support for vessel operational records review.
  • Error Proof Processes: Ensures all layers of requirements are systematically check-off.
  • Annual Report Preparation/Guidance: Expert development and timely submission of mandatory Annual Reports on the EPA website.

Get in touch

If you have any questions or comments please don't hesitate to contact us