9 May 2014 - The NGO Shipbreaking Platform is calling on the Italian government to ensure the safe dismantling of the wrecked cruise ship ‘Costa Concordia’ in accordance with Italian and EU law.
In a letter to the Italian government, the NGO urged for the Waste Framework Directive and the EU Ship Recycling Regulation to be followed.
It’s also calling for the ship owner and insurance to choose the most suited final destination for the wreck based on an Environmental Impact Assessment.
“The Italian Government must ask for the best possible techniques to reduce environmental risk during the towage and dismantling process”, said Patrizia Heidegger, executive director, NGO Shipbreaking Platform.
The Platform recommends that the cruise ship be towed to the closest port to limit as much as possible the release of polluted water into the sea, which could contaminate specially protected areas such as the Pelagos sanctuary.
“The minimisation of environmental risks cannot be subordinated to financial and other interests and it is the Governments responsibility to avoid harm to the environment and public health,” she added.
The chosen ship recycling facility must also comply with all domestic and European legislation governing waste management and environmental protection.
The NGO joins Greenpeace Italy, Legambiente and WWF Italy in voicing its concerns. They have demanded that the Italian Environment ministry monitor the company in charge of dismantling the Costa Concordia to guarantee that the environment and public health are protected throughout the duration of the operations.