Navy to recycle battleships in Liverpool
by David Masters
September 29, 2008
A UK-based company has won the contract to recycle the Royal Navy’s decommissioned battleships in Liverpool.
Bidding for the contract – which included strict environmental guidelines – was won by British company Leavesley International.
Falklands War veteran HMS Intrepid, which arrived in the Mersey last week, will be the first warship to be recycled by the company.
Fifty onsite workers will be employed to take the former assault ship to pieces, a process expected to take five months.
HMS Intrepid was decommissioned in 1999 after being replaced by the larger HMS Abion, and until this month stayed moored in Portsmouth harbour.
The Navy’s choice to recycle its ships in Britain will ensure compliance with international environmental standards on ship disposal, including the Green Passport Scheme adopted by the International Maritime Organisation, and DEFRA’s guidance notes on ship recycling.
Richard Norris, MOD Defence Equipment and Support Disposal Sales Authority assistant director of operations, said recycling the Navy’s ships is an ‘exciting initiative’ that shows how committed the UK is to the safe disposal of ships.
Baroness Taylor, Minister for Defence Equipment and Support, said the contract with Leavesley ‘reinforces’ the Royal Navy’s determination to make sure its vessels are disposed of responsibly.
Ship recycling can be controversial, with strict environmental regulations in the West, but a more lax approach in Asia where countries are keen to get hold of cheap steel.
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