The UK has taken the lead in recycling warships, according to a report by the Disposal Services Authority (DSA) on the recycling of the former warship HMS Endurance.
The recycling process for the ship was won after a competitive tender by LEYAL Ship Recycling of Turkey. The process resulted in 95.04% of the total materials being recycled or reused.
HMS Endurance was a Class 1 icebreaker which served as a Royal Navy ice patrol ship between 1991 and 2008. It ceased operational service in April 2012 and was made available for disposal to the DSA in June 2015.
In July 2015 DSA gave advance notice of the vessel for further use or recycling, nothing that it would require ‘considerable investment’ due damage caused by extensive flooding in 2008.
As part of the tender process, the DSA convened a Ship Recycling Evaluation Committee including representatives from the Maritime Coastal Agency and the DSA to assess the tender responses against set criteria. Prospective purchasers were required to produce a detailed Ship Recycling Plan, demonstrating their understanding of requirements involved in ship dismantling, which included environmental plans, and facilities and dismantling methodology.
After being awarded the contract, LEYAL Ship Recycling was required to provide a monthly breakdown of the outturn of metals and waste during the recycling programme. Audits were conducted by DSA staff which included a physical inspection of the yard in Aliaga, Turkey. Photographic evidence was also provided at ‘key stages’ of the dismantling process.
An Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM) was produced at the start of the project to ‘identify hazards’ contained in the vessel which was compared with the final outturn figures reported to the DSA by LEYAL.
An outturn of materials was communicated to the DSA on a monthly bases. The DSA found, in summary of this information, just over 3,700 tonnes of material were sold or recycled, which was 95.04% of the total materials. This included over 3,500 tonnes of ferrous metals.
The displacements and weights in tonnes of the lightship was 4,050 tonnes, with an estimated metal weight of 3,200 tonnes. Of this, just over 193 tonnes were disposed of.
The DSA said ex-HMS Endurance was completely recycled on the 29 August 2016.
Following the completion of the project, the DSA said: “The report will be sent out to senior internal stakeholders and a growing number of other foreign Governments as they view the UK MOD as the lead when it comes to recycling warships.”
The Disposal Services Authority (DSA) is the organisation within the Ministry of Defence (MOD) that has sole authority to dispose of all MOD surplus equipment within the UK and overseas.
According to the DSA, its aim is to sell surplus ships for further use but where this is not possible – for example when ships are no longer seaworthy and only suitable for recycling – its objectives are to ensure that the vessel is recycled in a safe and environmentally sound manner, in compliance with its legal responsibilities as a producer of waste.
More pictures are available in the report.