EMR Group said its International Shipbreaking Ltd (ISL) site in Brownsville, Texas is the first to accept a EU ship to be recycled in the U.S.

Using sustainable recycling processes, ISL was able to recycle 97% of the materials removed from MT Wolverine, a 158-meter-long chemical tanker with a carrying capacity of 16,000 tonnes, which prior to being decommissioned, was sailing under the flag of Norway.

The project follows a $30 million investment in new equipment and processes at ISL’s Brownsville yard, to meet the requirements of the EU Ship Recycling Regulation (EU SSR). ISL said its investment will help reduce the number of end-of-life vessels that are broken up, in rudimentary and often very unsafe conditions, on the beaches of South Asia. As of 2018, over 90% of merchant vessels were disposed this way, according to the NGO Shipbreaking Platform.

Wolverine was accepted for recycling on January 31, 2022 and is one of 28 projects undertaken by the company during the past year. The ship was built by Aker Tulcea SC SA in 2006. An Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM) was completed by the ship’s owner, which International Shipbreaking Limited reviewed before developing the MT Wolverine Ship Recycling Plan.

The project is fully compliant with the EU SRR with all waste materials removed from the MT Wolverine disposed of in accordance with the EU SRR requirements. The EU SRR helps responsible ship owners make the shipbreaking industry greener and safer. Increasingly, banks and investors are unwilling to fund shipping companies who cannot prove that their ships are recycled responsibly.

Chris Green, Senior Manager at International Shipbreaking Ltd LLC, said, “The arrival of MT Wolverine at our Brownville site was a proud day for everyone at International Shipbuilding Ltd.

“By investing $30 million in the latest technology, equipment and infrastructure, our business has become the first in the U.S. to be able to recycle ships to a level compliant with the EU Ship Recycling Regulation (EU SSR). MT Wolverine shows that this effort and commitment is paying off.

“Around the world there are still too many ships that end their days being recycled in dangerous and environmentally-harmful yards on the other side of the world. By continuing to raise our standards, International Shipbreaking Ltd is showing responsible ship owners there is better way to do business.

“ISL has the capacity to safely moor and recycle ships over 1200 feet (366m) in length and 158 feet (48 meters) wide.

“The capacity to recycle these large ships in a safe and responsible manner is available to EU Ship Owners. ISL completed the MT Wolverine ship recycling project without any recordable injuries to our employees, hazardous or regulated material spills, or regulatory violations of any kind. This represents a new era for International Shipbreaking Ltd. and our parent company EMR in the Marine Recycling industry.”

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