A Wolf in Ship's Clothing
Greenpeace joined with an international union of transport workers yesterday to launch a campaign against the world’s largest shipbreaking yard, which is located in western India. Shipbreaking, or the dismantling of decommissioned vessels, poses serious environmental risks because toxic wastes are often housed on the ships and appropriate environmental and safety precautions are not taken, according to a Greenpeace report released yesterday. The coastline near India’s Alang shipyard is regularly blanketed in fumes because fuel and lubricating oils are used to burn non-salvageable materials like asbestos. India now breaks down 70 percent of the world’s decommissioned ships, with most of the remaining shipbreaking being done in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and China.