Circular 8/00: Alaska - Certificate of financial responsibility for non-tank vessels


TO THE MEMBERS or from the following address: Financial Responsibility Program, 410 Willoughby Avenue, Suite 105, Juneau, Alaska 99801-1795. Members who require assistance from ADEC may telephone Chris Pace at the ADEC Juneau office (907 465 5231), or Ken Rogowski at the ADEC Anchorage office (907 269 3094). Dear Sirs


From 1 September 2000, owners or operators of self-propelled non-tank vessels exceeding 400 gross tons operating in Alaskan waters will be required to show proof of financial responsibility, in respect of oil pollution, in the following amounts:

(a) for vessels carrying predominately persistent product, US$300 per incident for each barrel of oil storage capacity, or US$5 million, whichever is greater;

(b) for vessels carrying predominately non-persistent product, US$100 per incident for each barrel of oil storage capacity, or US$1 million, whichever is greater.

The new requirement is imposed by Alaska Statute 46.04.055 (Financial Responsibility Act), which was signed into law on 7 June 2000. The requirement does not apply to ships engaged in 'innocent passage' through Alaskan waters, (such as those using the great circle route between US and Asian Pacific ports), or to ships which enter state waters because of imminent danger to the vessel or crew.

Final regulations to implement the Act are not expected until later in the year, but the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) has adopted an interim procedure for compliance with the deadline of 1 September, under which evidence of financial responsibility can be demonstrated by any of the following:

1. Affidavit of self insurance and most recent audited financial statement;

2. Insurance certificate and insurance policy;

3. Surety bond;

4. Financial guarantee, accompanied by guarantor's evidence of self insurance;

5. Letter of credit;

6. Certificate of entry evidencing coverage by a P&I Club;

7. Certificate of deposit with assignment of negotiable interest.

Owners and operators who already have existing Alaska Certificates of Financial Responsibility for tank vessels or oil barges may amend their current applications to include non-tank vessels.

Members should note that their Certificate of Entry will be accepted as sufficient evidence of financial responsibility, save in respect of financial responsibility for sums falling within a deductible, for which separate financial responsibility is required, such as a certificate of deposit. The Managers hope that in drafting final regulations Alaska will consider removing this requirement, at least in relation to reasonable levels of deductible. However, the requirement currently applies and Members who are concerned about the effect of a deductible should therefore contact the Managers for further assistance.

A completed application form together with appropriate evidence of financial responsibility, if received by ADEC by 31 August, will be deemed approved by ADEC for the purpose of meeting the September 1 deadline. Certified mail or fax confirmation should be used to record that applications have been submitted in time, as ADEC will not send separate confirmations of receipt. ADEC will review each application, when the final regulations have been issued, to ensure that it meets the requirements of the Act and regulations.

Application forms can be obtained from ADEC's web page at

Yours faithfully


Staff Author