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Showing posts from June, 2008

UN fails to stop globalisation of toxic waste trade

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9th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention, in Bali, Indonesia.
(photo credit: ©2007, IISD).


In his visionary speech that was laced with sadness, Jim Puckett, the Guru of toxics waste issues hammered the frozen conscience of the delegates at the plenary of the COP 9 in Bali and expressed his grave disappointment at the callousness of the Basel Parties such as Japan and India in the face of an imminent "global environmental collapse."


United Nations Waste Treaty Postpones Long Awaited Toxic Waste Dumping Ban

27 June 2008 (Bali, Indonesia.) – The week-long 9th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention ended today with little progress in breaking the deadlock that is preventing a global toxic waste dumping ban from entering the force of international law. An effort promoted by Japan, Canada, New Zealand and India to require the amendment to gather 128 ratifications, instead of 62 of those that agreed to it in 1995, met a vigorous rej…

United Nations Waste Treaty Postpones Long Awaited Toxic Waste Dumping Ban

27 June 2008 (Bali, Indonesia.) – The week-long 9th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention ended today with little progress in breaking the deadlock that is preventing a global toxic waste dumping ban from entering the force of international law. An effort promoted by Japan, Canada, New Zealand and India to require the amendment to gather 128 ratifications, instead of 62 of those that agreed to it in 1995, met a vigorous rejection led by many African and Arab countries that seek the earliest entry into force possible.

The ban was adopted as a proposed amendment to the Basel Convention in 1995 and was a goal of the developing countries since the beginning of the Convention. It has now received 63 ratifications but not all of these qualify to enter it into force as they were not present at the time of its adoption.

"It has been 13 years since the global community passed the Basel ban to end the export of toxic wastes from wealthy countries to developing coun…

Health Impact of Hazardous Waste Trade Under Scanner

UN Conference on Hazardous Wastes concerned about emergence of new waste streams

Bali: The ninth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP9) to the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal commenced on Monday 23 June, 2008. The Convention was initiated in response to numerous international scandals regarding hazardous waste trafficking that began to occur in the late 1980s and continues till today.

The key issues to be considered by COP9 include: the 2009-2010 programme of work; a budget for the Basel Convention trust funds for 2009-2010; a recommendation for improved cooperation and coordination between the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions developed by the Ad Hoc Joint Working Group on Cooperation and Coordination; initiating a process to develop a successor arrangement for the Strategic Plan beyond 2010; agreeing to an approach towards reaching an agreed interpretation of paragraph 5 of Article 17 of the Conventio…

Ship from Spain carrying a lot of pain to Alang

NEW DELHI: A 38-year-old Spanish liquefied natural gas (LNG) ship, Laieta, is speeding up to reach an Indian ship breaking yard at Alang in Gujarat for getting reduced into scrap.

Sources said the vessel left her homeport at Barcelona without cleansing herself of the toxic material before she is put to bleaching in India. Laieta has approximately 1,200 metric tonnes of asbestos on it besides others toxins and heavy metals.

The export of hazardous waste-laden ships for demolition is prohibited under the Basel Convention, an international treaty designed to reduce the movements of hazardous waste between nations, and specifically to prevent transfer of hazardous waste from developed to less developed countries.

"The departure of the vessel without pre-cleaning in the country of export is illegal under the international law, European law and under the Indian domestic law," says Gopal Krishna of Ban Asbestos Network of India.

According to sources, about 90-odd ships are languishing…

Pakistani Scrap ship owners asked to hand over radio equipment

National security endangered: Scrap ship owners asked to hand over radio equipment

With a view to saving endangered security the Government has asked the scrap ship owners to hand over communications and navigational equipment within 45 days of import.

Violation of the order will invite stern actions including cancellation of ship import licence, stoppage of issuing no objection certificate for ship breaking and other legal actions under government rules.

The Government recently issued an order asking all concerns to follow the rules regarding handing over of communications and navigational equipment.

The Government took the decision after revealing that some of the scrap ship importers are violating the rules creating threat to national security by mishandling communications and navigational equipment, informed sources said.

Meanwhile, in the recent days law-enforcing agencies noticed that radio communications equipment which include MFHF, VHF, transmitter and receiver, walkie-talkie set …

FINNISH & SPANISH SHIP HEADED TOWARDS INDIAN WATERS SANS PRE-CLEANING

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Finland’s GTS Finnjet (MV Kingdom) & Spanish vessel LAIETA on its way to Alang





Finnish ship GTS Finnjet (renamed MV Da Vinci, and MV Kingdom) is expected to reach Alang today. It is the fastest conventional ferry with a recorded top speed of 33.5 knots. It was sold for scrap and renamed named MV Kingdom in May 2008 with a price of approximately $ 9.85 million.

Its port of registry is Nassau and us under the flag of Bahamas. Its 212,96 m in length and 25,4 m in breadth. It was build at the ship yard of Wärtsilä, Helsinki, Finland. Its former woners are Cruise Ship Holdings Four Ltd. (2008), Finnjet Bermuda Ltd. (2006-2008), Silja OY (1986-2006) and Finnlines (1977-1986) and MV Cruise Ship Holdings Number Six Ltd. In quick change of hands through proxy buyers, reports suggests that one Jeckon International, Liberia has sold MV Kingdom to an Indian company, Rishi Ship Breakers at Alang.

Also a liquefied natural gas (LNG) named 'LAIETA" built in 1970 is leaving Spanish Europea…

The problem with ship scrapyards isn't what you think

Note:Sources say, Oceanic (SS Independence) is currently in Macau.

She was built in 1950, at Bethlehem Steel in Quincy, Mass., a shining 682-foot steamship big enough to carry 1,000 passengers at 23 knots down the "sun lane" from New York to the Mediterranean. She carried President and Mrs. Truman across the Atlantic in 1958. Advertisers boasted her as the first air-conditioned liner, with "American designs, American fabrics, even an American soda fountain, and true American hospitality." They called her the SS Independence.

Now, 58 years later, airplanes have made her transatlantic voyages redundant and her years as a cruise ship in Hawaii are over. Grass is growing between the teak planks of her sun decks and the flowers painted on her stacks are fading. She has been renamed the SS Oceanic, and the asbestos and chemicals she was built with have environmental groups like the Basel Action Network calling her a floating "toxic time bomb." Today the Oceanic …

DG Shipping bans old foreign ships from India waters

Maritime regulator the Directorate General of Shipping has banned foreign cargo vessels over 25 years and gas carriers over 30 years from sailing on Indian waters because of rise in "casualties" during the monsoon season.

The immediate impact of this circular would be that the number of ships sailing on India waters would be less leading to spike in freight rates.

The move to ban older foreign vessels came after DG Shipping's analysis of accidents over the last three years showed a significant corelation between the age of vessels and break-downs, which cause these casualties, DG Shipping said in its circular.

In July 2007, Ministry of Shipping set up a Committee to suggest measures to reduce casualties. The Committee after making an analysis suggested the "revision of guidelines to restrict the age of vessels plying in Indian waters and a tighter regime of surveys and inspections".

The circular came into effect from May 15. The government has declared foul weather…

Murder in Gadani, business as usual in Alang & Chittagong

According to American Chronicle report dated May 09, 2008, in few recent reports on Bangladesh ship-break industries, it has been emphasized that Bangladesh has emerged as a major ship-breaking destination in South Asia.

An average of 150-200 vessels is being scrapped in Bangladesh every year according to one report. Bangladesh is getting a competitive edge over its rival in neighboring countries like India and Pakistan.

Both India and Pakistan generate around 4,000 tonnes of scrap steel per vessel, while Bangladesh generates 12,000-15,000 tonnes of scrap steel per vessel according to the data provided by the report.

A high official of Ship Recycling Industries Association of India have confessed that "Indian Ship-breakers are losing business to Bangladesh" in an interview.


In the meanwhile, Narendra Modi led state government of Gujarat has engaged the Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services Limited (IL&FS), a firm to explore development, maintenance and operation o…