The EU is to impose a ban under the stipulations of which owners will no longer be able to scrap ships on the beaches of South Asia.
Under the new requirements, ship owners will be obliged to recycle all EU-registered ships at sustainable facilities. The measures in question aim to lower the environmental as well as the human cost regarding the current dismantling process of vessels that takes place on South Asian beaches.
Although, the stringent new rules by the EU are set to prove beneficial for Turkish, Chinese and European recyclers alike, the established practice of dismantling vessels on South Asia’s beaches will not go without a fight. The facilities provided by South Asia are, in general, preferred by ship owners due to the fact that they have fewer rules regarding the ship scrapping process which transits into higher profit levels for all involved in the breakdown.
The recycling process in South Asian yards basically boils down to all old vessels being rammed onto beaches and then stripped down by hundreds of unqualified for the task workers that use basic non-sufficient tools like blowtorches. Due to the yards not being up to standard as well, chemicals leak straight into the ocean when the tide rolls in.
According to NGO Shipbreaking Platform statistics, out of the total 1,026 ships that were recycled in 2014, 641 were dismantled in Bangladesh, Pakistan and India.
Expectations are that a list of all sustainable facilities, available for ship owners to recycle their respective vessels, is going to get published next year and it may feature yards in China, Europe, North America and Turkey.