(WASHINGTON) — The U.S. Coast Guard announced in the Federal Register that it is adjusting the limits of liability for vessels, deepwater ports and onshore facilities to reflect the increase in the Consumer Price Index since they were last adjusted in 2019.
The regulatory inflation increases to the limits of liability are required by the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90) and are necessary to preserve the deterrent effect and “polluter pays” principle embodied in the act. The final rule is effective on March 23.
The Coast Guard is responsible for adjusting the limits of liability for vessels, deepwater ports and onshore facilities. The Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is responsible for adjusting the limits of liability for offshore facilities.
Regarding vessels and deepwater ports, the Coast Guard adjusted the limits of liability in 2009, 2015 and 2019. Regarding onshore facilities, the Coast Guard adjusted the limits of liability twice, in 2015 and in 2019. Regarding offshore facilities, BOEM published a final rule and adjusted the limits of liability for offshore facilities in 2018.
For more details, read the Federal Register final rule or call or email Benjamin White, National Pollution Funds Center, at (202) 795-6066, or Benjamin.H.White@uscg.mil.
– Coast Guard Maritime Commons