In This Issue

Coast Guard Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Increasing OPA Liability Limits

[Docket No. USCG-2013-1006]

The Coast Guard published a notice of proposed rulemaking that would increase the limits of liability for vessels, deepwater ports, and onshore facilities, under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, as amended (OPA 90), to reflect significant increases in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). For onshore facilities, the Coast Guard proposes to increase the OPA 90 liability limit from $350 million to $404.6 million.

This notice of proposed rulemaking is proposing a simplified regulatory procedure for the Coast Guard to make future required periodic CPI increases to the OPA 90 limits of liability for vessels, deepwater ports, and onshore facilities. These regulatory inflation increases to the limits of liability are required by OPA 90, and are necessary to preserve the deterrent effect and “polluter pays” principle embodied in OPA 90.

In addition, there is proposed language to clarify applicability of the OPA 90 vessel limits of liability to two categories of tank vessels, edible oil cargo tank vessels and tank vessels designated as oil spill response vessels.

Comments identified by Docket No. USCG-2013-1006 can be submitted via the E-Gov Website on or before October 20, 2014.

For a copy of this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, contact Jessica Foley.