Brazil Abandons 34,000 Ton Damaged Asbestos Ship In International Waters
After five months of limbo, the Brazilian Navy has made it clear that they have abandoned the 34000-ton environment hazard aircraft carrier São Paulo into the sea. The 870 ft long ship is embroiled in an environmental dispute over its toxic contents.
Earlier in 2021, the ship was sold to a Turkish shipyard for scrapings, and in August 2022, the vessel finally started its journey to Turkey from Rio de Janeiro. However, it couldn’t enter Turkey as Brazil couldn’t prove that the ship wasn’t carrying the alleged toxic material asbestos.
Asbestos is known for its usage as a shipbuilding material.
The environmental hazard ship is unwanted by Brazil as they didn’t let it dock at the Pernambuco state coast, citing the risk of ship abandonment. Because of this, the vessel has been circling Brazilian up till January 20.
On January 20, Brazil revealed they had left the ship in international waters as it was at risk of grounding and threatening shore life. The vessel with a damaged hull remains in international waters.
Local Brazilian newspapers have revealed that the only solution is to tie up the ship with explosives and sink it. Marine conservationists believe this could trigger a massive environmental disaster because of its enormous size.
Also, the ship is carrying toxic substances like fuel, paint and electrical wiring, along with thousands of tons of asbestos.
This is gross negligence and a violation of international laws, reveals experts, highlighting that the ship needs to head back to Brazil and be dismantled there in an environmentally sound way. However, Brazil has made it clear that they won’t allow the ship back into their territory, and they declined to comment on where it should head.
The new Brazilian government is concerned about the situation but won’t risk souring its relationship with the armed forces.
References: Time, Canada Today