Don't let poor recycling decisions damage your reputation14 August 2019
John Chillingworth of Lucion Marine warns ship and rig owners of the risks to brand reputation by taking the wrong recycling decisions.
A trusted reputation and positive brand recognition are the cornerstones of success for any business, but in today’s environmentally aware marine industry a critical news report or an unfavourable ‘tweet’ can undo years of good work in seconds.
For those vessel operators or rig owners who get recycling wrong, problems can escalate, with rumour and unfavourable reporting reaching regulators, customers and stakeholders very quickly, invariably leading to a severe impact on corporate trust and integrity.
Such considerations are particularly relevant at the moment, with new regulatory deadlines looming to ensure that shipping operators recycle their vessels safely and new emissions standards likely to lead to older and inefficient vessels being scrapped.
Already news reports highlighting dangerous recycling working practices or what are perceived as irresponsible attitudes to environmental issues are appearing regularly across the international press and maritime trade media. Recovering from such setbacks can be both expensive and time-consuming.
Reports like these show that organisational behaviour and corporate social responsibility in the marine industry are now under greater scrutiny than ever among an environmentally aware public. As well as reputational damage there can also be financial penalties with growing calls for shipowners and managers to be made liable for the workplace deaths and accidents that unfortunately take place every year on the shipbreaking beaches and yards of Bangladesh, India and Pakistan.
In the circumstances, it is more important than ever that responsible fleet managers, ship operators and rig owners take sensible and environmentally acceptable decisions whenever a vessel reaches the end of its working life.
To help them do so Lucion Marine’s specialist consultants have earned a worldwide reputation in the field of ship recycling and hazardous materials management in keeping with the Hong Kong Convention and EU regulations for the recycling of maritime vessels.
For example, the company has been specially appointed to provide support activities to the European Commission on the EU Ship Recycling Regulation (Regulation No 1257/2013). As part of this role Lucion is one of only two organisations retained by the EU Commission to approve and verify worldwide recycling yards for inclusion on the EU approved ship recycling register.
In addition, the company’s specialist team has widespread expertise in preparing an Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM) for all types of vessels.
Lucion also has the ability and the resources to work directly with the recycling yards to prepare a safe vessel recycling plan and then audit the shipbreaking facilities to ensure that all procedures are in keeping with the required international standards.
At the end of the process, this essential advisory role also extends to providing the owner with an approved certificate of completion with a full audit report of the recycle process, documenting the safe disposal of hazardous materials.
Environmental issues, sustainable business practices and safe working conditions are now at the centre of the international marine industry’s regulatory focus. As a result, in this often complex and online connected world, for those ship and rig operators who make the wrong recycling decisions, the risks to corporate image and reputation could be catastrophic.