§ The Prime Minister
Responsibility for controlling or dealing with the marine environment is shared between a number of Government Departments. The Ministry of Agriculture. Fisheries and Food is responsible for safeguarding fisheries and for controlling disposal at sea in England and Wales; the Department of Transport is responsible for the control and prevention of pollution at sea from ships, particularly in relation to oil and noxious liquid substances, and for any necessary remedial action at sea; the Department of Energy is responsible for the control of offshore oil and gas development operations, including the control of pollution from such operations. The Warren Spring laboratory, Department of Trade and Industry, undertakes research sponsored by the marine pollution control unit, Department of Transport, and offers technical advice on beach cleaning and oil and chemical spills at sea, dispersants and spraying. The Department of the Environment is responsible for controls over discharges of trade and sewage effluents to the aquatic environment, including coastal waters, and is also responsible for co-ordinating central Government policy on the control of pollution generally. In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the Scottish Office, Welsh Office and Northern Ireland Office have similar responsibilities in respect of environmental protection.