Avoid Polluting with Pleasure Craft

It is against the law to pollute the water with things like oil, garbage, hydrocarbons and untreated sewage in inland waters.

The Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships and for Dangerous Chemicals address major risks to the health of our waterways and shorelines such as sewage, garbage and hydrocarbons. Sewage contains, among other things, human or animal body waste, drainage and other waste from toilets.

These regulations prohibit the use of freestanding portable toilets. They also require that boats fitted with toilets be equipped with either a holding tank or a marine sanitation device. If your boat was built before May 3, 2007, you must comply with these regulations by May 3, 2012. Boats built on or after May 3, 2007, must comply immediately.

Oil, fuel, anti-freeze and transmission fluid are a few examples of pollutants that harm the environment when pumped overboard – usually by automatic bilge pumps. Bilge  cleaners, even the biodegradable ones, just break down the oil into tiny, less visible droplets.

It is very important if you operate your boat on a lake or river and then tow it over land to use in another area. Rinsing or cleaning your hull after use or before entering new waters helps to remove spores and other invasive organisms