BOAT owners mooring in Queensland's marinas, canals and marine parks are reminded of their responsibility to
protect coastal waters.
Maritime Safety Queensland advises that the unlawful discharge of sewage into the marine environment can pose serious health and environmental issues.
A campervan discharging waste in a public park is not tolerated and neither are recreational vessels using coastal waters as a waste facility.
Protecting the pristine quality of Queensland's waterways is a shared responsibility and everyone must work to prevent marine pollution whether operating a large commercial ship or a smaller recreational vessel.
Queensland has some of the most idyllic boating environments in the world and Maritime Safety Queensland imposes clear rules for recreational boaties about where and how sewage must be discharged.
Boat owners with on-board sewage treatment systems should make sure they know the rules.
This is especially important for vessel owners at moorings in canals, marinas, boat harbours and marine parks where the discharge of untreated sewage is prohibited.
These ships must have a sewage holding device if operating in areas where sewage discharge is not permitted.
Maritime Safety Queensland marine officers and their partners in the Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol conduct regular inspections of vessels to ensure compliance with the legislation.
If protecting the environment isn't sufficient incentive for boat owners to meet their sewage management obligations, there are also tough penalties.
It is illegal to discharge untreated sewage in prohibited discharge waters and in the most severe cases penalties can be up to $100,000.
Simple measures can prevent accidental spills. This includes maintenance and regular testing of treatment systems and ensuring sewage is regularly discharged, preferably to a land-based facility.
For more information on pollution regulations visit www.msq.qld.gov.au.