June 23, 2023 | Circular No. 11538

Dear Member,

Today TC released an Interim Order respecting the discharge of sewage and the release of greywater from cruise vessels in Canadian waters. This Interim Order makes mandatory those restrictions that were adhered to by industry on a voluntary basis in 2022 and the beginning of 2023. The Federation was active in consultations leading up to this announcement, in particular discussions around a lack of shoreside reception on the East Coast, and solutions on how TC can help ensure such facilities are adequate and widely available. Availability of such facilities is important to the industry at large as we know that some restriction of operational discharges will apply to all large vessels in Marine Protected Areas in the coming years.

Per the IO, Mandatory measures for the cruise ship industry include:

  • Prohibiting the discharge of greywater and treated sewage within three nautical miles from shore where geographically possible across Canada;
  • Strengthening the treatment of greywater together with sewage before it is discharged between three and twelve nautical miles from shore south of 60°N using an approved treatment device in non-Arctic waters. This will complement existing regulations for Arctic waters under the Arctic Waters Pollution Prevention Act; and
  • Reporting compliance with these measures in Canadian waters upon request.

Please contact the undersigned with questions.



Miako Ushio

Manager, Enviornmental and Regulatory Affairs