Sport Fish Restoration
Clean Vessel Act
Clean Vessel Act Coordinator: Rhonda Price
Mississippi's Marinas Cleaning Up
The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources has been committed to cleaning up the quality of our water since 1994, when the Clean Vessel Act (CVA) program was first authorized. Since that time discharging raw sewage into state waters has been prohibited. Any marina in Mississippi is eligible to participate in this program that provides for a cash reimbursable grant with a 75% Federal and 25% marina match.
Why Do We Need Clean Water?
Since 1992, the Coast has grown significantly and more people continue being drawn to the Coast. By the year 2010, more than 53% of the people in the U.S. are expected to live within 50 miles of a coast. With the increase in population, there will be an increase in threats to the richness and beauty of the waters which provide these attractions in the first place. Even boating can contribute to the degradation or loss of our important coastal resources.
Extensive studies prove boat sewage dumped into our waters may affect aquatic plants, fish and other animals. The primary goal of Mississippi’s Clean Vessel Act (CVA) program is to reduce and eventually eliminate overboard sewage discharge from boats.
Congress passed the Clean Vessel Act in 1992 to reduce pollution from vessel sewage discharges after finding that there was an inadequate number of onshore sewage disposal facilities in waters frequented by recreational boats and determining that these vessels may be a substantial contributor to localized degradation of water quality.
Under the provisions of the Clean Vessel Act, $40 million will be reauthorized for distribution to the States over a five-year period. These funds come from boaters and anglers through taxes paid on fishing tackle and motorboat fuels under the Federal Aid Sport Fish Restoration Act program.
Raw sewage can spread disease, contaminate shellfish beds and lower oxygen levels in water, causing fish and other aquatic animals to die. Because of the CVA, boaters can expect to see more convenient and reasonably priced pump out and dump stations and as a result, cleaner waters, with healthier fish and shellfish populations.
Start Helping Now
Most of the areas where boats congregate, like harbors and marinas, are naturally sheltered and semi-enclosed. That means the pollution put there, ends up staying there. Bacteria and chemicals in human waste from boats can overload poorly flushed waterways and cause local water quality problems.
Properly managing sewage on our boats is something everyone can do right now to help improve local water quality. As we fish, swim, ski or just relax on our boats, we all rely on having clean water.
Location of Mississippi's Clean Vessel Partners
The map depicted below shows the location of the marinas in Coastal Mississippi (please allow time for this file to load).