2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 25 Sep 2003 15:39:45 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] UK Approves Passage of Polluted U.S. 'Ghost Fleet'
United Kingdom
UK Approves Passage of Polluted U.S. 'Ghost Fleet'
Thu September 25, 2003 11:27 AM ET

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain gave the green light on Thursday to a
controversial scheme in which a fleet of 13 decrepit and contaminated
former U.S. Navy supply ships will cross the Atlantic to a scrapyard in
northern England.

The Department of Transport's Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) ruled
that the first two vessels in the "ghost fleet" could enter UK waters as
soon as adjustments were made.

The dilapidated supply ships are polluted with carcinogenic
polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) -- banned in the 1970s -- asbestos, and
varying quantities of heavy marine diesel oil.

Environmental groups say allowing them into Britain could be risky and
may also set a dangerous precedent.

The MCA dispatched two surveyors to the United States to report on the
condition of the vessels and MCA chief spokesman Mark Clark said that
once remedial work recommended by the surveyors had been carried out the
ships would be seaworthy.

"They could pose a risk but once the work is completed they will not
represent a threat to the UK shoreline any more than other legitimate
shipping movements," Clark said.

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