2004 Assessment of Cruise Ship and Ferry Wastewater Impacts in Alaska January 26, 2004

The 2001 state cruise ship legislation directed the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation to submit a report to the Governor assessing commercial passenger vessels' discharges in Alaska marine waters. Using information from the 2000 - 2003 cruise ship seasons and other sources, this report satisfies the requirements to:

  • Characterize, to the extent possible, the risks to the marine and human environments posed by the discharge of sewage and graywater from commercial passenger vessels
  • Evaluate the sewage and graywater treatment systems and technologies on the vessels, including an evaluation of whether small commercial passenger vessels should be made subject to the discharge limitations in AS 46.03.463
  • Recommend further action by the state in relation to the matters discussed in the report

This report also presents general background information and detailed appendices of wastewater sampling data, in response to the numerous requests received by DEC staff from industry, environmental groups, and other government agencies.

Bilge and ballast water issues are a maritime wide concern and are beyond the scope of the 2001 legislation and this report.