Page last updated at 11:09 GMT, Monday, 4 January 2010

Praise for 'toxic' ship scrapping

Clemenceau being dismantled
The Clemenceau is being dismantled alongside other former naval vessels

A European environmental group has praised the dismantling of a former French aircraft carrier on Teesside.

The Clemenceau, now known as the Q790, was rejected by India and Egypt as being too toxic, and is being broken up and recycled near Hartlepool.

Able UK has been carrying out the work at Graythorp, one of Europe's largest dry docks, since February.

Following a visit, environmental group Robin Des Bois described the £8.75m project as "positive and pioneering".

Asbestos-related material has been removed from the 32,700-tonne vessel.

Intricate operation

This process was reviewed by Robin Des Bois, which later said in a statement: "The dismantling of the former Clemenceau is a positive and pioneering operation in Europe in the technical and information fields.

"It is also an exemplary operation for the cross-border transfer of waste, which is carried out under the framework of the Basle Convention."

Neil Etherington, Able UK's group development director, said the removal of the asbestos had been a complex and intricate operation, but work was soon to begin on the stern section.

He said: "In total the operation will involve cutting the hull into around 80 sections each weighing around 300 tonnes which are then lowered to the dock floor where the material can be segregated into ferrous and non-ferrous materials.

"We anticipate that the project will be completed by summer."



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SEE ALSO
Ghost ship arrives in north-east
08 Feb 09 |  Tees
A controversial end to 'The Clem'
07 Feb 09 |  Tees
Ghost ship firm to scrap carrier
02 Jul 08 |  Tees
June scrap date for 'ghost ships'
04 Jan 08 |  Tees
Toxic fine for 'ghost ships' firm
13 Nov 07 |  Tees
Council faces 'ghost ships' bill
01 Nov 07 |  Tees

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