The EU Ship Recycling Regulation was published in the Official Journal of the EU on Tuesday 10 December 2013, after its adoption by the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union. The official text of the Regulation can be found here.
New Ship Recycling Regulation - objectives and main elements
The objective of the Regulation is to reduce the negative impacts linked to the recycling of EU-flagged ships. The Regulation brings into force an early implementation of the requirements of the 2009 Hong Kong Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, therefore contributing to its global entry into force. The Regulation also includes additional safety and environmental requirements.
The new Regulation will apply to large commercial seagoing vessels flying the flag of an EU Member State and to ships flying the flag of the third country calling at EU ports or anchorages. To ensure legal clarity and avoid administrative burdens, ships covered by the new legislation will be excluded from the scope of the Waste Shipment Regulation (EC) 1013/2006.
The Regulation sets out a number of requirements for European ships, European ship owners, ship recycling facilities wishing to recycle European ships and the relevant competent authorities and administrations. It also requires the Commission to adopt a number of acts to implement the Regulation (one key act will be the European List of ship recycling facilities authorized to recycle ships flying the flag of an EU Member State).
According to the new rules, the installation or use of certain hazardous materials on ships will be prohibited or restricted. These hazardous materials include for instance asbestos and ozone-depleting substances. Each new European ship (or a ship flying the flag of a third country calling at an EU port or anchorage) will be required to have on board an inventory of hazardous materials verified by the relevant administration or authority and specifying the location and approximate quantities of those materials.
Owners of ships flying the flags of EU Member States will have to ensure that their ships are only recycled in ship recycling facilities included in the European List. They will have to ensure that each end-of-life ship is prepared for recycling. For this, they will have to:
EU Member States' port authorities will be authorised to control European ships to verify whether they have on board a ready-for-recycling certificate or a valid inventory of hazardous materials.
To be included in the European List, any ship recycling facility irrespective of its location will have to comply with a number of requirements. The Commission will assess the applications received from the ship recycling facilities located in third countries. The template for applications of ship recycling facilities located outside the EU to the European List can be found here. For facilities located in the EU Member States, it is the national authorities which will indicate to the Commission which facilities located on their territory are compliant. The European List will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union and on the website of the Commission by the end of 2016. The Commission will be able to regularly update the European List in order to include or remove ship recycling facilities from the List.
The Commission is currently compiling guidelines clarifying the technical requirements of the Regulation for ship recyclers wishing to recycle EU ships.