Photo: E Woehler
- Antarctic Marine Living Resources Conservation Act 1981
- Environment Protection (Sea Dumping) Act 1981
- Fisheries Management Act 1991
- Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976
- Protection of the Sea (Prevention of Pollution from Ships) Act 1983
Summaries of this legislation and links to the legislation itself are given below.
The Antarctic Marine Living Resources Conservation Act 1981 (AMLRC Act) implements Australia’s obligations under the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR).
The Reserve falls within statistical subdivision 58.5.2 of the Convention area; a small part of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) extends into division 58.4.3. The Act is administered by the Australian Antarctic Division and provides for a system of permits and inspectors, and allows for the implementation of conservation measures adopted by the CAMLR Commission.
The Fisheries Management Act 1991 takes precedence over the AMLRC Act in some respects (e.g. managing commercial harvesting).
For more information go to the Australian Antarctic Division website.
The Environment Protection (Sea Dumping) Act 1981 regulates the dumping at sea of controlled material (including certain wastes and other matter), the incineration at sea of controlled material, loading for the purpose of dumping or incineration, export for the purpose of dumping or incineration, and the placement of artificial reefs.
The Act gives effect to Australia's obligations under the 1996 Protocol to the Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter, 1972 (thereby also fulfilling Australia's international obligations under the London Dumping Convention).
Permits are required for any sea dumping activities. Operational discharges from vessels are not defined as ‘dumping’ under the 1996 Protocol and are therefore not regulated under the Act.
For more information go to the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts website.
The Fisheries Management Act 1991 regulates fishing activities (taking etc of fish, including all species of bony fish, sharks, rays, crustaceans, molluscs and other marine organisms, but not including marine mammals or marine reptiles) in the Australian Fishing Zone (AFZ) which is, generally speaking, the waters adjacent to Australia between three and 200 nautical miles of Australia’s territorial sea baselines, the latter figure corresponding to the outer limits of the exclusive economic zone.
The Act also regulates fishing by Australians on the high seas, including in the CCAMLR area.
View the Fisheries Management Act 1991
For more information go to the Australian Fisheries Management Authority website.
The Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976 provides for the protection of historic shipwrecks and associated relics, and provides for the establishment of protected zones around historic shipwrecks.
All shipwrecks and associated relics more than 75 years old have been protected under the Act by Ministerial declaration. A wreck less than 75 years old may also be protected by a declaration of the Minister.
The Act prohibits conduct in relation to historic shipwrecks and relics, including conduct that destroys or causes damage to an historic shipwreck or relic, causes interference with an historic shipwreck or relic, causes the disposal of an historic shipwreck or relic, or causes an historic shipwreck or relic to be removed from Australia.
View the Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976
For more information go to the Department of the Environment and Heritage website.
The Protection of the Sea (Prevention of Pollution from Ships) Act 1983, administered by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), deals with the protection of the marine environment from ship-sourced pollution.
The Act implements the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships 1973 and the subsequent 1978 Protocol to the Convention (collectively MARPOL 73/78) and regulates normal operational discharges from ships.
MARPOL 73/78 annexes regulate the discharge of oil (Annex I), noxious liquid substances (Annex II), the disposal from ships of sewage (Annex IV) and garbage (Annex V) and prohibit the disposal of harmful substances carried by sea in packaged forms (Annex III).
For more information, go to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority website.