ship dismantling

Clarksons calls EU to speed up approval of Turkish yards as country’s capacity for green recycling fills up

Ship recycling yards in Turkey that are compliant with safety and environmental requirements of the European Union are full until the end of the year, Clarksons Platou Shipbroking said in a report.

Illustration; Image Courtesy: NGO Shipbreaking Platform 2012

The report indicated that there is limited space available at the other EU facilities on the Continent which are not all fully operational or able to take larger LDT units.

As of December 31, 2018, the EU Ship Recycling Regulation requires all large sea-going vessels sailing under an EU member state flag to use an approved ship recycling facility included in the list.

The move is aimed at curbing the practice of European shipowners, who own 35 percent of the world fleet, of dismantling their ships on beaches in South Asia, under conditions which are often harmful to workers’ health and the environment.

“With Maersk having sold the largest container unit sold for recycling to this destination for EU approved recycling yard, it is rumoured that this vessel may have to remain at the anchorage for up to two months until the yard it is destined for becomes free,” Clarksons said.

As reported last week, Maersk sold a 9, 640 TEU containership Sine Maersk for demolition at Turkish Sök Denizcilik Tic. Ltd. Sti – an E.U. compliant certified yard. The European List of approved ship recycling facilities that comply with strict safety and environmental criteria contains 41 shipyards as of January 2020.

Related Article

“This clearly shows the lack of capacity for a large volume of tonnage that had become or will become available for recycling sale at an EU approved yard which clearly contradicts those in the EU authorities and the environmental organisations suggesting there is plenty of space available.”

The shipbroker believes that the EU Commission needs to acknowledge this shortfall and start to speed up the process for approving alternative yards in Turkey which are up to EU recycling standards and have been waiting for a ‘rubber stamp’ since the start of this year.

Furthermore, according to Clarksons, the commission should push forward the case for India to seriously now be considered as a location for green recycling.

Maersk, for one, has been at the forefront of the initiative of helping Alang-based yards improve their practices to meet the company’s sustainability standards.

The company decided to recycle two ships in Alang back in 2016, while working at the same time with the facilities on improving their business.

India has been working hard to improve its global reputation as one of the world’s top ship dismantling nations by upgrading its safety and environmental track records.

In 2019 the country passed its Recycling of Ships Bill, 2019 making it an Act. The act restricts and prohibits the use or installation of hazardous materials, which applies irrespective of whether a ship is meant for recycling or not.

The move came on the back of the country’s accession to the Hong Kong International Convention for Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, 2009.