P&O Nedlloyd adopts procedures on ship decontamination
Anglo-Dutch container shipping line P&O Nedlloyd has adopted procedures on the decontamination of old containerships before they are scrapped, to remove sources of hazards.
“By separating the ship decontamination process from demolition, the new procedures have greatly improved conditions for workers at the (demolition) yards,” P&O Nedlloyd said.
The issue of contamination by hazardous materials on old ships has been highlighted in recent years by environmental organizations.
Rutger van Slobbe, executive director of P&O Nedlloyd, said the carrier has cooperated with the Dutch Ministries of Transport, Environment and Economic Affairs on its ship-recycling project.
The company has completed the first phase of the project, using what it described as “pioneering new environmentally friendly procedures.” P&O Nedlloyd said that, since 2000, it has recycled 19 ships at Chinese yards near Shanghai.
P&O Nedlloyd has documented its manual of procedures, which specifies the procedures required for preparing the ship for recycling before delivery to the yard, while the crew remain on board. “This entails precleaning the tanks, conducting a radiation survey, listing toxic and asbestos materials and taking out everything that can be safely removed at this stage,” P&O Nedlloyd said.
Once at the yard, the ship is cleaned of all hazardous material before demolition. The asbestos, insulation and electric cable are removed, and the refrigerant recovered. “All waste from the ship is processed in strict compliance with the law and when demolition is complete — a process which takes six weeks — a certificate of recycling is issued to record the fact that the ship no longer exists,” P&O Nedlloyd said.