2005 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: 17 Mar 2005 21:10:06 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Baltimore Sun calls MARAD inept
Ships and fools

Baltimore Sun
March 13, 2005

THE MARITIME Administration owns a fleet of good-for-nothing ships, and
it continues - after years of trying - to show an astonishing ineptitude
at getting rid of them. 

At one time, the government kept a fleet of mothballed freighters and
tankers against the day when they might be needed in a national
emergency. But national emergencies came and went, and the ships just
sat at their moorings, rotting away. A decade ago, MARAD, as the agency
is known, was selling these decrepit ships to breakers for scrap,
particularly in Brownsville, Texas, where labor was cheap and law
enforcement lax. These were dodgy businesses that killed and maimed
workers, bilked the government and polluted the environment. 

In 1998, this all came to a halt, and MARAD proceeded to spend years
wishing that the problem of its old ships would go away. But people who
lived near the "ghost fleets," especially along the James River in
Virginia, grew alarmed over the possibility of an environmental disaster
if one or more of the ships should founder. So, prodded by Congress,
MARAD began looking for contractors to dismantle the old vessels at
government expense. 


For the entire editorial, see


Lenny Siegel
Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
c/o PSC, 278-A Hope St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/961-8918
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