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Navy Afloat Pollution Prevention


History of Navy shipboard environmental protection:

In the 1970s: The Navy installed sewage collection and holding tanks on ships to prevent the discharge of raw sewage in coastal waters and in port.

In the 1980s: Navy ships were equipped with oil/water separators and oil content monitors to prevent the discharge of oil at sea.

In the 1990s: The Navy proactively stopped using tributyltin (TBT) hull antifouling coatings, far in advance of the international treaty to ban TBT paints. The Navy also began equipping all warships with solid waste processing equipment including Plastic Waste Processors (PWPs), pulpers (for paper and foodstuffs), and metal/glass shredders to ensure that plastics are not discharged at sea, and that all other solid waste discharges are made with minimal environmental impact while at sea.

21st Century: The Navy converted all chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) air-conditioning and refrigeration systems to non-CFC to help protect the ozone layer. The Navy outfitted all warships with pollution prevention afloat equipment to reduce generation and offloads of hazardous materials, saving time and money, and protecting the environment. The Navy has also reduced hazardous material items by 15 percent to enhance the safety and health of our Sailors. The Navy exclusively uses shipboard paints with reduced air emissions, including volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to enhance air quality in port.