What is our Pollution or LBS Protocol?
LBS Protocol: Signature and Entry into Force
The Protocol Concerning Pollution from Land-Based Sources and Activities (LBS Protocol) to the Cartagena Convention was adopted in Oranjestad, Aruba, on 6 October 1999. 16 Contracting Parties to the Cartagena Convention signed the Final Act of the LBS Protocol. The Protocol entered into force on August 13, 2010.
LBS Protocol: Introduction
The Protocol is the most significant agreement of its kind. It includes regional effluent limitations for domestic wastewater (sewage) and requires the development of plans to address agricultural non-point sources of pollution. Specific schedules for implementation are also included in the Protocol. The LBS Protocol allows countries to develop and adopt future annexes to address other priority sources of land-based pollution.
LBS Protocol: Annexes
The main text of the Protocol provides general obligations and a legal framework for regional co-operation. The operative Annexes describe the work that each Contracting Party must do, and gives guidance for the development of regional actions.
- Annex I establishes a list of land-based sources and activities and their associated contaminants of greatest concern to the marine environment;
- Annex II outlines and establishes the process for developing regional standards and practices for the prevention, reduction, and control of the sources and activities identified in Annex I.
- Annex III establishes specific regional effluent limitations for domestic sewage; and
- Annex IV requires each Contracting Party to develop plans, programmes and other measures for the prevention, reduction and control of agricultural non-point sources of pollution.
The implementation of the Protocol and the development of future source-specific annexes will be determined by the Contracting Parties with assistance from a Scientific, Technical and Advisory Committee (STAC).
LBS Protocol and other Global Agreements
The LBS Protocol assists the United Nations Member States in the Wider Caribbean Region to meet the goals and obligations of two international agreements: The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the Global Plan of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA).
UNCLOS calls upon States to adopt laws and regulations to prevent, reduce and control pollution of the marine environment from land-based sources.
The GPA highlights the need for action to reduce the pollutant load to the seas from land-based sources and activities. Both of these instruments emphasize the need to act at the regional level to address this problem.