The Senate Finance Committee has advanced a bill that would change how Alaska regulates cruise ship wastewater.
HB80 has passed the House. Senate Finance is the last committee on the Senate side scheduled to review it before it moves to a vote.
The bill would strike a more stringent requirement that discharges meet state water quality standards at the point of discharge. It would allow for mixing zones, if ships meet certain discharge treatment standards.
Critics say the proposal would roll back provisions of a citizen initiative.
Lynn Kent, a deputy Environmental Conservation commissioner, told the committee cruise ships are treating wastewater at a high level and that won't change under this bill.
She said no vessel has consistently met all the water quality standards at the point of discharge.