The European Commission (EC) arranged a meeting on 26 November 2020 between the EC, the Member States and representatives of three NGO’s: ECSA, NGO Ship Breaking and ISRA. This was the fourth time the EC arranged such a possibility to exchange views.
NGO Ship breaking (NGO SB) had two extensive interventions: clear and unambiguous figures about the amount of end of life vessels being illegal exported and for a major part beached. The other presentation of NGO SB concerned the export of EU-flagged end of life vessels to EU-listed facilities. NGO SB pointed out that this conflicts with the Basel Ban, where exports of waste to Non-OECD countries is prohibited. Since end of life ships are defined of waste, exports are not allowed.
ECSA referred to the possibilities for Indian recycling yards to get a place on EU-list of ship recycling facilities. ECSA emphasized the need for these facilities and repeatedly underlined the fact that the applicants concerned had found a way to deal with the intertidal zones. ECSA stated that downstream waste management and hospitals are elements that are not controlled directly by the applicants, but the applicants have to experience the negative impact in the process of application.
ISRA, Board Member, illustrated with convincing figures that the present EU SRR is in practice not working properly. He made clear that a number of Member States do not act in conformity with the EU SRR. He referred letter of ISRA sent to Commissioner Sinkevicius, calling up to take action and to address a number of Member States to commence with a serious enforcement policy and to letters to some Member States which obviously ignore (partial) the EU SRR.
The Head of the Waste department of the EC, Mr. M. Pelligrini welcomed the way the convincing figures were presented. He was very clear that these data and the open communication about these figures, can lead to targeted policy actions, either to be taken by the EC or the Member States involved.
In this context, it was made clear that some Member States had received information from the EC concerning the enforcement of the existing EU SRR. The EC called upon and exchange of views between the ISRA and ECSA and also advised to talk with producers of steel (through electro furnaces) in the EC.
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