Do you have a boat that you call home? Because many of your daily functions are done on the water, you are in a unique position to protect our waterways from pollution. 


Dealing With Waste

  • Sewage contains intestinal pathogens, such as viruses, parasites, and bacteria that can be harmful to humans and wildlife. Your house boat is legally required to be equipped with one of the following:
    • An operable Coast Guard certified marine sanitation device, or
    • A self-contained portable toilet or other on-board portable sewage reception system that prevents the overboard discharge of treated or untreated excrement, sewage, or other waste matter or contaminant of any kind, or
    • A legal connection to a permitted public sewer system.
  • Always empty your holding tanks at a pump-out facility and never discharge any sewage into waterways. Visit the California Parks and Recreation Department’s Division of Boat & Waterways to find pump-out locations.


Prevent Fuel And Oil Spills

  • When filling your tank, avoid topping off and leave the tank 5% empty to avoid overflowing, as fuel expands when it warms in the tank.
  • Inspect fuel lines, hoses, hydraulic lines, valves, oil seals, gaskets, and
  • connections for leaks and deterioration.
  • Keep “oil-only” absorbents available to clean up spills and drips.
  • Install drip pans under all equipment while docked to catch any oil leakage and prevent it from contaminating the waterway.
  • Keep up with regular maintenance to prevent leaks and keep the engine operating at peak efficiency.


Read more about protecting our waterways as a boater here