Skip to main content
Biological diversity
Marine and Freshwater

Definition(s)

Ocean-going ships load up with water in bilge holds using the extra mass to keep them stable while they ply their way to their destination port. More ballast is used when ship are not fully loaded with cargo and this water is then pumped back into the sea when the ship takes on new cargo. Many problems can result if discharged ballast water contains pollutants or living organisms that can potentially have negative effects on local marine life at the destination port. (Source: UNESCO)

In other languages

French
eau de ballast
Russian
водяной балласт
Spanish
agua de lastre
Chinese, Simplified
压舱水
Arabic
مياه الصابورة

Explore content

Follow up the links below to see InforMEA content related to ballast water coming up from several external sources.

Multilateral environment agreements tagged with ballast water

You can see below a list of multilateral environment agreements. Use the links on the right to view the content tagged with ballast water. This includes official treaty texts, decisions, recommendations, and other related informational documents such as publications, annuals, meetings, documents or reports.