asked the First Lord of the Admiralty what active measures he has in force for the prevention of pollution by oil of the waters lying within the dockyard ports, with especial reference to Portsmouth; what orders apply to Her Majesty's ships on this subject; what penalties can be imposed under Queen's Regulations for contravention of these orders; and what supervision of merchant ships is maintained within the dockyard ports.
The Queen's Regulations and Admiralty Instructions clearly lay it down that oil must not be discharged in port. Commanders-in-Chief and the Admiralty take a serious view of an infringement of this instruction. Such offences are, I am glad to say, very rare. The penalty imposed on any individual would depend on the gravity of his misdemeanour.Merchant ships are supervised by the Queen's Harbour Master, who would report any offence forthwith. If there were sufficient evidence, a prosecution would be instituted under the Oil in Navigable Waters Act, 1922.