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MARINE PROTECTION, RESEARCH, AND SANCTUARIES

ACT OF 1972

MARINE PROTECTION, RESEARCH, AND SANCTUARIES

ACT OF 1972

[Public Law 92–532, Approved Oct. 23, 1972, 86 Stat. 1052]

(Amended through Public Law 106–562, Dec. 23, 2000) AN ACT To regulate the transportation for dumping, and the dumping, of material

into ocean waters, and for other purposes. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, [33 U.S.C. 1401 nt] That this Act may be cited as the “Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of 1972”.

FINDING, POLICY, AND PURPOSE SEC. 2. (33 U.S.C. 1401] (a) Unregulated dumping of material into ocean waters endangers human health, welfare, and amenities, and the marine environment, ecological systems, and economic potentialities.

(b) The Congress declares that it is the policy of the United States to regulate the dumping of all types of materials into ocean waters and to prevent or strictly limit the dumping into ocean waters of any material which would adversely affect human health, welfare, or amenities, or the marine environment, ecological systems, or economic potentialities.

(c) It is the purpose of this Act to regulate (1) the transportation by any person of material from the United States and, in the case of United States vessels, aircraft, or agencies, the transportation of material from a location outside the United States, when in either case the transportation is for the purpose of dumping the material into ocean waters, and (2) the dumping of material transported by any person from a location outside the United States, if the dumping occurs in the territorial sea or the contiguous zone of the United States.

DEFINITIONS

SEC. 3. [33 U.S.C. 1402] For the purposes of this Act the term

(a) "Administrator" means the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

(b) “Ocean waters” means those waters of the open seas lying seaward of the base line from which the territorial sea is measured, as provided for in the Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone (15 UST 1606; TIAS 5639).

(c) “Material” means matter of any kind or description, including, but not limited to, dredged material, solid waste, incinerator residue, garbage, sewage, sewage sludge, munitions, radiological, chemical, and biological warfare agents, radioactive materials, chemicals, biological and laboratory waste, wreck or discarded equipment, rock, sand, excavation debris, and industrial, municipal, agricultural, and other waste; but such term does not mean sewage from vessels within the meaning of section 312 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended 33 U.S.C. 1322). Oil within the meaning of section 311 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended 33 U.S.C. 1321), shall be included only to the extent that such oil is taken on board a vessel or aircraft for the purpose of dumping.

(d) “United States” includes the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Canal Zone, the territories and possessions of the United States, and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.

(e) “Person" means any private person or entity, or any officer, employee, agent, department, agency, or instrumentality of the Federal Government, of any State or local unit of government, or of any foreign government.

(f) “Dumping" means a disposition of material: Provided, That it does not mean a disposition of any effluent from any outfall structure to the extent that such disposition is regulated under the provisions of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended 33 U.S.C. 1251-1376), under the provisions of section 13 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, as amended 33 U.S.C. 407), or under the provisions of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended (42 U.S.C. 2011, et seq.), nor does it mean a routine discharge of effluent incidental to the propulsion of, or operation of motor-driven equipment on, vessels: Provided further, That it does not mean the construction of any fixed structure or artificial island nor the intentional placement of any device in ocean waters or on or in the submerged land benefit such waters, for a purpose other than disposal, when such construction or such placement is otherwise regulated by Federal or State law or occurs pursuant to an authorized Federal or State program: And provided further, That it does not include the deposit of oyster shells, or other materials when such deposit is made for the purpose of developing, maintaining, or harvesting fisheries resources and is otherwise regulated by Federal or State law or occurs pursuant to an authorized Federal or State program.

(g) “District court of the United States” includes the District Court of Guam, the District Court of the Virgin Islands, the District Court of Puerto Rico, the District Court of the Canal Zone, and in the case of American Samoa and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the District Court of the United States for the District of Hawaii, which court shall have jurisdiction over actions arising therein.

(h) "Secretary" means the Secretary of the Army.

(i) “Dredged material” means any material excavated or dredged from the navigable waters of the United States.

G) "High-level radioactive waste" means the aqueous waste resulting from the operation of the first cycle solvent extraction system, or equivalent, and the concentrated waste from subsequent extraction cycles, or equivalent, in a facility for reprocessing irradiated reactor fuels, or irradiated fuel from nuclear power reactors.

(k) "Medical waste" means isolation wastes; infectious agents; human blood and blood products; pathological wastes; sharps; body

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