C – Other waste

The collection, deposit and reception of other waste produced in the course of operating the vessel


The waste of Part C forms a residue group when compared, on the one hand, to the categories of oily and greasy waste and, on the other hand, cargo waste. Part C focuses, in particular, on on-board management where a distinction must be made into the large group of cargo vessels and the fleet of passenger vessels.


The regulation in the Convention for cargo vessels aims at realising a provision level and financing form in the different countries that are comparable with that which is available “onshore”. Easily accessible deposit dedicated points at locations near where the vessels are moored and fixed funding that is integrated as much as possible into other existing payment obligations. This will ensure that household waste can be deposited at ports and that a direct payment for this will not be required but that costs are covered by the payment of port dues. The deposit of other special waste is also free of charge in many cases but a contribution may be demanded that can have the form of a subscription. Rules have not yet been foreseen for the treatment of household wastewater from cargo vessels. A different provision level in the countries and individual ports must also be taken into account because local regulations for handling waste and the regulations that focus on this can be significantly different in the countries. Those who navigate on inland waterways are familiar with this. They do aim at further coordination and optimisation on an international level.


Passenger vessels must be paid special attention. Although these vessels have traditionally been part of shipping on inland waterways, a large number of vessels have been added to the fleet especially during the last few decades and this fleet segment currently counts a few thousand units. This concerns both vessels for day trips that really have a local navigation area and cruise ships that cross the whole of the European navigation waterway network. These vessels can accommodate large numbers of passengers and, therefore, special attention has been paid to the handling of household waste. Household waste that is business waste within this context must be disposed of by these vessels at specialised services; processing on-board is not permitted and usually a payment must be made for disposal.


The regulations for household wastewater are based on a discharge prohibition for vessels that can accommodate 50 or more passengers; this discharge prohibition can be applied using two methods:

  • Storage on-board in tanks for wastewater set up especially for this purpose and disposal of this water at the port (connection to the sewer system or other system);

  • Treatment on-board using a permitted on-board water treatment system; the purified water fraction may be discharged to the surface water and, therefore, the vessel has a greater autonomy with regard to this issue. Treatment sludge that is produced during this process must be disposed of at companies that have been accredited for its processing.

For information about the type approval of the water treatment plants on board: see “On-board sewage treatment plants” on the CCNR website.