Boating  Pollution  Prevention Tips
                     By following a few tips when using your boat, you can help prevent both air and
                     water pollution.
                     You Can Make a Difference in Preventing Marine Engine
                     Over 10 million marine engines are operated in the United States. These marine
                     engines are among the highest contributors of hydrocarbons (HC) and oxides of
                     nitrogen (NOx) emissions in many areas of the country. HC and NOx emissions
                     contribute to ground-level ozone, which irritates the respiratory system causing chest
                     pain and lung inflammation. Ozone can also aggravate existing respiratory conditions
                     such as asthma. Boaters can join many others who are working to make a difference
                     in preventing pollution from marine engines.
                     Improving the Marine Engine
                     The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) set emission standards for new
                     outboard and personal watercraft engines that started to take effect in 1998 and were
                     fully phased in by 2006. To meet these standards, engine manufacturers developed
                     technologies for new and better engine designs. Starting with the 2010 model year,
                     new outboard and personal watercraft engines must meet a second round of more
                     stringent standards. In addition, new 2010 model year sterndrive and inboard
                     engines started to meet emission standards. These sterndrive and inboard engines
                     will usually be equipped with fully electronic controls and catalytic converters, which
                     will allow them to achieve a high level of performance while significantly reducing
                     exhaust emissions. Similar emission standards also apply for diesel marine engines.
                     Boaters Can Prevent Pollution
                     Even with the new technology, the cooperation of individual boaters is essential in
                     the effort to improve air quality and prevent pollution. Boaters can make a difference
United States
Environmental Protection
Office of Transportation and Air Quality
                       January 2013

that will help protect the environment now and in the future by adopting the following

       Limit engine operation at full throttle,
       Eliminate unnecessary idling,
       Follow the manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule,
       Prepare engines properly for winter storage,
       Buy new, cleaner marine engines.

Refueling is also important. Any fuel that spills is not only wasted, it pollutes the water or it
evaporates and contributes to air pollution. Pumping gasoline at a marina requires care to avoid
overfilling. The marine industry has developed standards for new boats to address this problem.
For older vessels, it is up to the operator to monitor the fill level while pumping the gasoline. For
boats designed for refueling with portable fuel containers, the following steps can help
prevent fuel spills:

       Pour slowly and smoothly,
       Use a spout with an automatic stop device for better control,
       Close the vent on the portable fuel containers for storage,
       Transport and store gasoline out of direct sunlight in a cool, dry place,
       Use caution when pumping gasoline into a container at the gas station,
       Measure carefully if you mix gasoline and oil.

By combining these strategies, boaters can reduce  pollution from marine engines and help keep
our air and water clean.
For More Information
You can access documents on gasoline boats and personal watercrafts on EPA's Office of
Transportation and Air Quality (OTAQ) Web site at:

You can also contact the OTAQ library for document information at:

          U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
          Office of Transportation and Air Quality Library
          2000 Traverwood Drive
          Ann Arbor, Michigan 48105