Gandhinagar: The largest ship-breaking yard in Asia may come up at Alang port in Gujarat with the Ministry of Shipping deciding to develop one there with eco-friendliness as a top concern. As per the announcement, the dismantling yard may be the first such place in the world to work on warships too.
As per the statement given by Union Minister for State for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping, Chemical & Fertilizers Mansukh Mandaviya, as of now there is no such facility available around the world where warships can be dismantled with legal permission.
“The Ministry has decided to develop Alang as an eco-friendly ship-breaking yard. The yard will be developed by the Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) and the Alang Ship Recycling Yard Association through a Rs. 215-crore fund allocated through the Ferrous Fund setup for the purpose,” Mansukh Mandaviya said on Friday.
“Due to the non-availability of facilities of warships to be dismantled anywhere in the world, tremendous business awaits at Alang. There are hundreds of ships waiting to be dismantled and Alang can be the perfect place for them. This is a big business beyond anybody’s imagination,” said the minister.
The Ferrous Fund derived from the work can help in creating other infrastructure facilities like service roads, pipelines for water passage to do fire fighting, for LNG and PNG, boundary walls and sewage treatment plants etc.
“Digital security cameras with night vision facility will be placed at strategic places in the yard. The fund will also be utilized for the Rs. 5 lakh accident insurance for labourers,” said the minister.
The fund may also be utilized to set up a 40-meter, six or seven-storeyed tower, in the same way that a lighthouse is built. Binoculars can be placed on the top of the tower to get a better view of the ship-breaking process for the visitors.
Ship breaking is a process to dispose off not usable ships which involves the breaking up of ship parts with the aim of selling away its parts for re-use or to extract raw materials from it called as scrap. The process is also called as ship dismantling or ship recycling. Modern era ships have a total lifespan of about 25 to 30 years before its exposed parts face the problem of corrosion, metal fatigue and due to unavailability of parts make them almost uneconomical to function. Breaking the ship into small parts helps in extracting steel to be recycled and manufactured into new products from it. The process helps in lowering the demand for iron ore and also helps in reducing energy usage in the steelmaking process.