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Dutch canals offer niche recycling market

The Netherlands – An estimated 25 000 end-of-life boats and yachts are floating on Dutch canals at the present moment. ‘This is an underestimated and explosively growing problem,’ according to Dutch start-up company Jacht Recycling. ‘Something has to be done to limit damage to both the nautical sector and the environment,’ it argued at the annual Yacht Symposium held recently in Rotterdam.

The rising popularity of water sports saw a great number of large civil vessels produced in the 1960s and 1970s. ′Sadly, these yachts were not designed to be recycled or dismantled back then – a result of which is that recycling them has gotten quite expensive, but no-one wants to foot the bill,′ the company observed.

′It is difficult to find where pleasure craft can be recycled responsibly, so they are often abandoned in local marinas.′ Furthermore, owners are virtually impossible to trace while the yachts themselves often contain environmentally harmful substances. Jacht Recycling hopes to change the situation by developing pioneer status in this niche recycling market.

It will take ′immediate action′ once a vessel enters its yard and will have an expert draft a risk report and recycling plan. Customers will receive a certificate of recycling once a vessel has been processed in line with European standards.

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