The Shipbreaking Platform campaign group has welcomed updated EU guidance for accrediting ship recycling facilities, introduced to improve standards and health and safety in areas such as south Asia.
Facilities seeking EU approval will have to show evidence of safe working conditions, pollution control including proper waste management, and enforcement of international labour rights.
Ingvild Jenssen, policy director of the Shipbreaking Platform, said: “Recycling yards that want to make it on the EU list of approved facilities need to meet high environmental and safety standards. The European Commission is clear in its message: an unprotected beach is never going to be an appropriate place for a high-risk heavy industry involving hazardous waste management.”
The EU Ship Recycling Regulation sets out a standard by which workers and the environment anywhere in the world have the same right to protection.
The Shipbreaking Platform says that attempts by some member states to accept low-cost beaching facilities in south Asia as environmentally friendly and safe for workers in order to make it on the list have not been successful.
The group says that, for ship owners globally, the EU list will be the only guarantee that end-of-life vessels are not harming workers or the environment.
“While only vessels sailing under an EU flag will be legally obliged to use an EU-approved facility, any shipping company around the world with a responsible policy can use the EU-listed facilities to prove their effort,” added Jenssen.