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Canada Proposes Great Lakes Ballast Water Regulations


Transport Canada (TC) seeks to further reduce the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species by vessels by amending their Ballast Water Control and Management Regulations. TC proposes to apply the regulations to domestic and foreign vessels, including those operating in the Great Lakes Basin (i.e. upstream of St. Lambert lock).

In the case of Great Lakes vessels, TC would propose to extend the compliance timeline to September 8, 2024.

TC also proposes to establish September 8, 2024 as the date for compliance by vessels that operate exclusively in waters under Canadian jurisdiction (or there and on the high seas). TC also proposes to require vessels travelling to Canadian freshwater ports from outside the exclusive economic zone to continue performing ballast water exchange until September 8, 2024.

TC recommends the requirement of vessels that load or discharge ballast water in Canada to carry a document issued by, or on behalf of, their Administration establishing that ballast water planning and management onboard the ship is equivalent to that required by the Convention.

The proposed regulations are summarized here. The Transport Canada website provides a helpful guide to their ballast water regulations.