The selection of SN Corporation, an HKC-compliant yard in Chittagong, Bangladesh, for its first green recycling initiative, demonstrates H-LINE Shipping’s commitment to promoting sustainable practices in the maritime industry. This decision not only contributes to environmental protection but also has a significant social impact by creating employment opportunities for a large number of people.
Bangladesh ratified the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, even before it came into force. This agreement, established in 2009, sets guidelines for safe and environmentally friendly ship recycling practices. By adhering to these guidelines voluntarily, Bangladesh showcases its dedication to responsible ship recycling.
The selected yard in Chittagong has undergone thorough verification by leading classification societies, including ClassNK and IRS, who have issued Statements of Compliance (SOC) after examining the recycling processes and infrastructure. The yard boasts a range of features that promote environmental responsibility, such as a 100% impermeable concrete floor for easy cleanup of fluids, proper collection and disposal of rust particles and dust, and appropriate handling of generated metal slag.
To ensure smooth operations during the cutting process, the yard is equipped with crawler cranes, magnetic cranes, and pick and carry trucks for efficient movement and transportation of heavy steel blocks. A barge-mounted crane aids in lifting steel blocks from the ship’s hull and placing them on the impermeable floor, minimizing contact with the intertidal zone. Safety measures include winches for securing the ship’s hull, advanced firefighting arrangements, and the presence of an HSE team to ensure safe working practices.
Hazardous materials are segregated and stored separately within the yard premises, and if asbestos is found on board a vessel, an asbestos decontamination unit is employed for its removal. The yard provides essential facilities for workers, including a canteen, drinking water, first aid measures, medical check-ups, and accommodation that adheres to the standards set by the International Labour Organization (ILO). Workers are equipped with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and an in-house training facility accommodates up to 50 workers at a time.
The ship recycling industry in Bangladesh has been active for over five decades, with Chittagong alone housing more than 40 operational recycling facilities. This industry plays a significant role in the employment sector, providing jobs for over 200,000 people. By selecting an HKC-compliant yard in Bangladesh, H-LINE Shipping sets a positive example for other prominent ship owners from Japan and South Korea, inspiring them to embrace sustainable ship recycling practices.
As leaders in the maritime industry adopt sustainable ship recycling practices, the positive impact on the environment and the global shipping sector as a whole will be substantial. H-LINE Shipping’s pioneering steps and confidence in choosing an HKC-compliant facility in Bangladesh contribute to a greener and more responsible future for the maritime industry.