23 September 2013

Coming soon: EU ship recycling regulation

Europe: The EU Council and Parliament have reached an agreement on the text of the much-discussed EU ship recycling regulation. This will come into force 20 days after it is published in the official EU journal, probably before the end of the year or in early 2014.

The new regulation will apply to large commercial sea-going vessels (of more than 500 GT) and will require ship owners to have an Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM) much earlier than by the expected entry-into-force date of the Hong Kong Convention. Within the first time window, it will require all ships flying under an EU flag to own an IHM; after seven years at the latest, all ships entering European ports will have to present the IHM to port state control authorities.

It is hoped that green-lighting the regulation in the coming months will further motivate Ship Recycling Facilities (SRFs) to appear on the already-established EU list of accepted SRFs so they may receive ships from EU member states for future recycling operations.

In addition, a ship recycling plan will have to be developed by the operator of the SRF prior to any recycling of a European ship; such a plan will be based on data provided by the ship owner and is thought to be 'essential' for the safe and sound treatment of the vessel.

Again, an IHM is key as ship owners will be required to minimise their cargo residues, remaining fuel oil and ship-generated wastes remaining on board. Regular surveys and port checks will be conducted to ascertain whether the vessels in question are in compliance with the IHM specifications of the new regulation.

Source: recycling international. 19 September 2013

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