Intertanko testimony to the Congressional committee on transportation and infrastructure - Dr Peter Swift

This paper proposes that OPA 90's current limits for ships are realistic, adequate, allow for necessary increases, and incorporate well-tested, proactive spill response mechanisms. The removal of the shipowner's right of limitation would cut across the 'polluter pays' principle, the bedrock of OPA 90, which preserves a balance between shipowner and cargo owner/receiver liability. A shipowner must be able to insure its liabilities otherwise he cannot trade and revising any part of this equation could prejudice the continuance of oil imports to the United States.


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