The London Convention and Protocol

The "Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter 1972", the "London Convention " for short, is one of the first global conventions to protect the marine environment from human activities.  The Convention has been in force since 1975. Its objective is to promote the effective control of all sources of marine pollution and to take all practicable steps to prevent pollution of the sea by dumping of wastes and other matter.

In 1996, the "London Protocol" was agreed to further modernize the Convention and, eventually, replace it.  Under the Protocol, all dumping is prohibited, except for possibly acceptable wastes on the so-called "reverse list".  The London Protocol entered into force on 24 March 2006.

Further information and a current list of Parties to the Convention and Protocol, can be found on the IMO website.

Recommended reading

  • IMO Secretariat.  London Dumping Convention: The First Decade and Beyond, 1990. This report forms part of IMO Document LDC 13/INF.9 submitted to the 13th Meeting of Contracting Parties which was held 29 October - 2 November 1990.
  • Timagenis, GJ.  International control of marine pollution. Vol. 1, Chap. 6, pp. 171-289.  Dobbs Ferry, N.Y: Oceana Publications,  1980.
  • Hunter, LAW. The Question of an Ocean Dumping Convention.  Conclusions of the Working Group on an Ocean Dumping Convention. Studies in Transnational Legal Policy, No.2.  Washington, DC: American Society of International Law, 1972.