The European Commission (EC) has published the initial list of approved ship recycling facilities. All the 18 facilities in the list belong to the European Union. Out of this, France, Lithuania and the UK accounted for half of the approved facilities. Other countries in the region that featured in the list of approved facilities include Belgium, Denmark, Latvia, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Spain.
The approved facilities in France, as per the EC list, are GARDET & DE BEZENAC Recycling/Groupe, Grand Port Maritime de Bordeaux and Les Recycleurs Bretons. The approved ship recycling facilities in Lithuania are UAB APK, UAB Armar and UAB Vakaru refonda. The UK’s three approved shipyards are Able UK Limited, Harland and Wolff Heavy Industries Limited and Swansea Drydock Ltd. The other approved facilities in the list are NV Galloo Recycling Ghent, Belgium; Fornæs ApS, Denmark; Smedegaarden A/S, Denmark; A/S ‘Tosmares kuģubūvētava’, Latvia; Keppel-Verolme, the Netherlands; Scheepsrecycling Nederland B.V., the Netherlands; ALMEX Sp. Z o.o., Poland; Navalria, Portugal and DDR VESSELS XXI, S.L., Spain.
According to the Commission, all the listed shipyards have fulfilled the strict requirements and will have exclusive rights to recycle ships flying the flags of Member States of the European Union. The EU Ship Recycling Regulation, adopted in 2013, requires that all large sea-going vessels sailing under an EU Member State flag to use an approved ship recycling facility at the end of their life.
The applications received from ship recycling yards located in third countries are currently under review, the Commission said. The assessment of the relevant information and the supporting evidence is still going on. Those facilities will be included in the list in 2017, following necessary site inspections in order to validate their credentials. The Commission had opened the application for inclusion in the list from non-EU countries in December 2015.
It needs to be seen whether or not yards in South Asia which still uses the beaching method, would be included in the list. Off late, many yards in the region have made significant improvements during recent years. For instance, Indian Ministry had proposed major amendments to the Shipbreaking Code 2013, which makes it mandatory for ship breaking companies to store radioactive and other hazardous waste in a temporary facility within their yards, before collection by registered recyclers for further processing. Also, lead-acid batteries and other lead-bearing waste that are classified under hazardous waste have to be disposed off through registered recyclers. In addition, electrical and electronic waste must be disposed off only through registered certified e-waste recyclers.
Meantime, Karmenu Vella, the EC’s Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries congratulated all the eighteen European companies who made it into the list. The list underscores the fact that Europe which often designs and builds ships has facilities to take care of them at the end of their life too.
The Commission has also introduced four additional acts to provide information on hazardous materials in ships and facilitate the recycling process. Accordingly, all ships visiting European ports must carry on board an inventory of hazardous materials from 2021 onwards. Incidentally, all EU flag ships for dismantling must provide inventory of such materials.
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