Whistleblowers Under the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships
Resources for Whistleblowers
Whistleblowers are the key to preventing illegal oil and waste pollution in our oceans. Of the thousands of ships at sea every day, up to 15% will knowingly pollute by ignoring and bypassing regulations. Far away from official oversight and in international waters, the only people who can prevent this from happening are the courageous whistleblowers who report this behavior. Those who are brave enough to draw attention to violations of the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (“APPS”) or the MARPOL Protocol can be compensated with up to 50% of the monetary penalties that the United States Government receives from the guilty parties.
Here are cases in which whistleblowers have been rewarded for their courage and their aid in preventing ocean pollution. In many of these cases, the fines and penalties disclosed have been used to serve the public interest and fund environmental groups and organizations.
If you would like to consult a skilled attorney for help on your case, please fill out the form here.
The Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (“APPS”) authorizes U.S. Courts to award whistleblowers with substantial sums. This law covers violations of international law, including the MARPOL Protocol and the Antarctic-Environmental Protocol (also known as the Madrid Protocol). “In the discretion of the Court, an amount equal to not more than 1⁄2 of such fine may be paid to the person giving information leading to conviction.” 33 U.S.C. § 1908(a).
- APPS Statute
- DOJ argues on behalf of whistleblowers, explains the importance of rewards
- DOJ press release documenting the importance of employees in uncovering violations
- Drilling Operator Sentenced: DOJ Press Release announcing $512,000 reward
- DOJ press release announcing $375,000 reward
- Background into DOJ enforcement of APPS
- A Seafarer’s Guide: Handbook on APPS rules
- SCI’s Center for Seafarer’s Rights
- Marine Defenders
- APPS/MARPOL Whistleblower Disclosures Serve the Public Interest
- Ocean Pollution Cases
- For More Ocean Pollution Resources, click here.
Stephen Kohn leads a panel at the Environmental Law Institute to discuss the important role whistleblowers play in enforcing environmental laws such as APPS.