German authorities urged to hold ACL accountable for breaching European waste laws


NGO Shipbreaking Platform has urged the German authorities to hold Italy's Grimaldi Group subsidiary Atlantic Container Line (ACL) accountable for allegedly violating European waste laws.

The Platform has accused ACL of deliberately selling two of its G3 vessels, including Swedish-flagged Atlantic Cartier and Atlantic Conveyor, for scrapping in South Asian yards.

The organisation has also blamed ACL for illegally exporting toxic waste to South Asia.

Shipbreaking Platform said in a statement: “The German competent authorities were alerted about the imminent illegal export of the ships from the port of Hamburg and prompted to take action to stop the vessels from departing.

“Despite the warnings and the clear signs that the ships were destined for scrap, the authorities did not halt the ships.”

In addition, the Platform alleged that German port authorities had ignored the issue by stating that there was no evidence for the arrest of the vessels, despite the fact that logos of both the ships had been painted over before the final voyage.

"German competent authorities were alerted about the imminent illegal export of the ships from the port of Hamburg and prompted to take action to stop the vessels from departing."

The organisation has also blamed ACL for not disclosing truth about the vessels to the Canadian and UK authorities, despite the ships sailing through these countries before arriving in Hamburg, Germany, for their last EU port call.

The authorities also knew that the ships were intended for scrapping but did not halt the vessels, noted the Platform.

Shipbreaking Platform further added: “The Atlantic Cartier arrived in Alang, India, on 20 September and the Atlantic Conveyor hit the beach on 7 October, after vessel tracking providers curiously indicated that the container carrier was ‘Steaming 4 Sunshine’.”

It also noted that international waste laws and the EU Waste Shipment Regulation are regularly circumvented by ship owners to falsely declare the continued operations of end-of-life ships during departure from ports.


Image: An anchored ship. Photo: courtesy of NGO Shipbreaking Platform.