EMSA undertakes a number of mainly preventive, but also reactive tasks, in certain key areas in order to meet its objectives.
Firstly, the Agency has been tasked with assisting the Commission in monitoring the implementation of EU legislation relating, among others, to ship construction and planned maintenance, ship inspection and the reception of ship waste in EU ports, certification of marine equipment, ship security, the training of seafarers in non-EU countries and Port State Control.
Secondly, the Agency operates, maintains and develops maritime information capabilities at EU level. Significant examples are the SafeSeaNet vessel tracking system, to enable the EU-wide tracking of vessels and their cargoes; and the EU LRIT Cooperative Data Centre, to ensure the identification and tracking of EU flagged ships worldwide.
In parallel, a marine pollution preparedness, detection and response capability has been established, including a European network of stand-by oil spill response vessels as well as a European satellite oil spill monitoring and vessel detection service (CleanSeaNet), both with the aim of contributing to an effective system for protecting EU coasts and waters from pollution by ships.
Finally, the Agency provides technical and scientific advice to the Commission in the field of maritime safety and prevention of pollution by ships in the continuous process of evaluating the effectiveness of the measures in place, and in the updating and development of new legislation. It also provides support to, and facilitates cooperation between, the Member States and disseminates best practices. As a body of the European Union, the Agency sits at the heart of the EU maritime safety network and collaborates with many industry stakeholders and public bodies, in close cooperation with the Commission and the Member States.