Free plastic disposal at ports
From 1 January 2016 sea-going vessels will be able to dispose of unlimited plastic ships’ waste free of charge in the ports of Rotterdam Rijnmond and the North Sea Channel district.
This action comes under the Green Deal Ships’ Waste Supply Chain agreement the Netherlands entered into with the sector back on 10 September 2014.
Netherlands’ Minister for Infrastructure and the Environment, Schultz van Haegen, said: “This is a great step towards reducing plastic waste at sea. Plastic waste is no longer a cost item, but can be disposed of free of charge and will be used more and more as a raw material in the recycling industry.”
Participants in the Green Deal include the Port of Rotterdam Authority, Port of Amsterdam, Zeeland Seaports, Groningen Seaports, Port of Den Helder, NVVS (ships’ suppliers), KVNR (ship owners), collectors of ships’ waste, ILT and Stichting De Noordzee.
The Green Deal has been operating for over a year and the separate collection of plastic ships’ waste is growing steadily. Extra quality requirements have been incorporated into new and renewable licences for waste collectors when it comes to collecting, sorting and recycling plastic.
In addition, Dutch and Flemish ports have agreed on a joint financing system for the waste collection. The Netherlands is also pressing the European Commission to review the directive on the so-called ‘port reception facilities’.
Arrangements made under the Green Deal a year ago include waste prevention when ships stock up, waste inspections, separate waste disposal and the harmonisation of procedures in the ports.
By Anne-Marie Causer
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