APPS Whistleblower Lawyer & Marine Pollution Whistleblower Attorney: The Importance in Preventing Ship and Marine Pollution.
Marine pollution is a significant global issue that threatens the health of our oceans, marine life, and ultimately, human life. One of the most important and effective tools to uncover and prevent marine pollution is the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (APPS).
What is the APPS?
APPS is a U.S. federal law that implements the provisions of the International Convention for the Prevention of the Pollution from Ships treaty, otherwise known as MARPOL. This law applies to U.S.-flagged vessels and to all vessels under U.S. jurisdiction or operating in the country’s navigable waters. The majority of APPS enforcements are carried out by the United States Coast Guard and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
APPS includes a key whistleblower provision, which permits federal courts to grant rewards of up to 50% of the total fines to whistleblowers whose disclosures regarding pollution on the high seas result in a successful prosecution. This provision encourages seafarers to come forward and report violations without fear of retaliation, making them crucial partners in the fight against marine pollution.
If you have information regarding a company or individual polluting our national waters, we encourage you to reach out to Teller Law to schedule a complimentary consultation with experienced marine whistleblower attorney Stephen Teller. At Teller Law, we represent whistleblowers on a contingency fee basis, which means that in cases with merit, our services are provided on a “no recovery, no fee” basis. In other words, if the case is unsuccessful, you are not responsible for paying attorney’s fees. Furthermore, we typically advance all litigation costs on behalf of our whistleblower clients while a case is ongoing.
Environmental Whistleblower Lawyer Steve Teller
As an environmental whistleblower lawyer, attorney Steve Teller assists clients in reporting wrongdoing against the government or in violation of environmental laws and regulations in a variety of circumstances, including the APPS and illegal discharges into the ocean and waterways covered by the APPS. If you are aware of any such violations, please contact our firm and learn how we can help you, including protecting you as a whistleblower.
MARPOL Whistleblower Lawyer
The APP was made in furtherance of promoting the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), which was originally developed in 1973. MARPOL is the primary international treaty aimed at preventing pollution discharges in the marine environment. The APPS in a US law aimed to further to further stem environmental pollution by codifying certain activities as being illegal. If a person is aware of such illegal activities under MARPOL, a MARPOL whistleblower lawyer should be contacted, such as our firm founding attorney Steve Teller.
What Are Common Types of Marine Pollution Violations Under APPS?
Violations of APPS encompass a wide range of activities, including:
- Discharges above the permitted level of oil and oily water, noxious liquid substances, and garbage;
- Emissions of certain air pollutants;
- Disposal of certain pollutants in “special areas” or within a certain distance from land; and
- Disposal of any plastics into the ocean.
APPS also requires crews to maintain accurate Oil Record Books (“ORB”), ensuring that vessels are operating in compliance with regulations and providing documentation for authorities to review during inspections.
Cruise Ship Whistleblower Lawyer for Illegal Discharges
The APP specifically applies to cruise ships, which also may not engage in any prohibited discharges into the ocean or applicable waterways. Additionally, cruise ships may not discharge even treated sewage or graywater in certain locations, including the Alexander Archipelago or the navigable waters of the United States within the State of Alaska or within the Kachemak Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, unless certain conditions are met.
If you are aware of any cruise ship illegal discharges, you may wish to contact a cruise ship whistleblower lawyer to report illegal cruise ship activities. At Teller Law, Qui Tam Act lawyer Steve Teller is available to represent you and seek retribution for illegal conduct.
What Types of Awards May a Whistleblower Be Potentially Entitled to Under APPS?
Those who successfully report violations of APPS or MARPOL, such as merchant marine sailors and fishing boat crews, can be compensated with up to 50% of the monetary penalties that the U.S. government receives from the guilty parties. However, the average reward granted to whistleblowers as a result of successful APPS prosecutions was 28.8% of the total amount of funds collected by the government.
From the early 1990s until 2017, the U.S. government awarded 205 whistleblowers a sum of approximately $33 million in 100 prosecutions under APPS. These substantial rewards reflect the critical role that whistleblowers play in enforcing the law and protecting our marine environment.
Schedule A Free Consultation with Ship Pollution Whistleblower Lawyer Steve Teller Today!
As an APPS lawyer and ship pollution attorney, Steve Teller and lawyers like him play a vital role in seeking to ensure that violations of APPS and MARPOL are prosecuted and that whistleblowers are protected and compensated for their disclosures. He assists whistleblowers in navigating the complex legal process, from gathering evidence and reporting violations to tenaciously representing clients in court.
The success of APPS and similar laws depends not only on their enforcement but also on the ongoing commitment of governments, industry stakeholders, and individuals to prioritize the health of our oceans. By supporting whistleblowers and promoting public awareness and education, we can ensure that our oceans remain a vital and vibrant resource for future generations. If you have information regarding a marine vessel, ship, company, or individual who is polluting our national waterways, we invite you to call our office to schedule a free consultation with experienced marine whistleblower lawyer Steve Teller.
 Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships and MARIPOL, The United States Coast Guard, https://coast.noaa.gov/data/Documents/OceanLawSearch/ActtoPreventPollutionfromShipsandMARPOL7378.pdf.
 MARPOL Annex I, US Department of Homeland Security, https://homeport.uscg.mil/Lists/Content/DispForm.aspx?ID=892&Source=/Lists/Content/DispForm.aspx?ID=892.