Brussels, 3 October 2016 – The Circular Economy will be high up on the agenda of an event organised by the European Parliament’s S&D Group on Thursday 13 October 2016. The Platform’s Executive Director is speaking on a panel addressing innovations in recycling of cars, aeroplanes and ships.
At the event, Environment Commissioner Karmenu Vella will present the state-of-play on the EU Action Plan for the Circular Economy, while rapporteur Simona Bonafé will comment on the discussions taking place in the European Parliament on the waste package. Linkages to the energy and climate agenda, the impact on jobs and investment, as well as the importance of R&D and innovation will be addressed by a number of speakers during the morning session. In the afternoon, the experts will explore the potential of eco-design, reuse and remanufacturing and ways to close the loop for different transport modes.
The NGO Shipbreaking Platform will present solutions to the problems of today’s dirty and dangerous shipbreaking practices during the afternoon session. A circular economy strives at zero pollution and zero waste. Compared to cars and aviation, the shipping industry is a real laggard: ships are still being built with hazardous materials; they burn low-quality residual fuels that contain high amounts of black carbon, sulphur, ash and heavy metals; ship paints that are in direct contact with the eco system are still toxic; ship borne wastes continue to be dumped into the ocean; and last but not least, the vast majority of large commercial end-of-life vessels continue to be ramped up on intertidal beaches for breaking under extremely dangerous conditions for the workers and without containment of the pollutants.
“When it comes to recycling, it is so obvious that the shipping industry is still clinging on the old, linear model of ‘take, make, use, dump’. No need to say that ship recycling as such is a highly sustainable and necessary practice for a circular economy; however, the shipping industry is guided by the maximum profit it can obtain when selling their old tonnage to shipbreaking yards on the beaches of South Asia. State-of-the-art ship recycling aiming at zero waste, zero pollution and 100% sustainability is already available – we only need the right incentives to push ship owners towards these yards. This is why the Platform advocates for a strong legal framework without the loopholes created by non-compliant flags of convenience and where accountability clearly lies with the shipping industry”, says Patrizia Heidegger.
Source: NGO Shipbreaking Platform. 3 October 2016