Circumvented European Law to Dispose of Ships in India

Eimskip goðafoss laxafoss

Icelandic shipping company Eimskip, one of the largest businesses in the country, used a notorious middleman to dispose of two huge container vessels in India. In doing so, it circumvented European regulation meant to ensure that ships are recycled with the least possible damage to the environment. At least 137 people have died breaking down old ships on the coast where Eimskip sent its old container vessels due to dangerous working conditions. Icelandic news program Kveikur investigated the case.

Once their life on the sea is over, ships are immediately classified as hazardous waste due to the materials they contain, such as asbestos, radioactive materials, heavy metals, and hydraulic oil. European ship recycling facilities have measures in place to ensure such materials are recycled or disposed of safely, with as little damage as possible to the environment and to workers. Such is far from the case in shipbreaking yards in Southeast Asia, where dangerous working conditions and environmental damage are par for the course. This is where Eimskip sent two huge container vessels, Goðafoss and Laxafoss.

The full program is available on Kveikur’s website with English subtitles.

Núpsvötn Car Accident Among Worst in Icelandic History

fatal accident Iceland

The car accident in which three British citizens, including a child, lost their lives on Thursday morning is among the worst car accidents to have ever occurred in Iceland, RÚV reports.

There have only been three traffic incidents in Iceland in which more than three people died. There were four victims in each of those accidents. There have been nineteen accidents in Iceland in which there were an equal number of fatalities. The most recent of these occurred last November. The earliest happened in 2000, a year in which there were actually three serious traffic accidents with three fatalities apiece.

Thursday morning’s accident occurred when a car drove off the bridge over Núpsvötn on the south coast. Two brothers and their families were driving in the car, seven passengers in total, all of whom were British citizens who were born in India. Both of the brothers were seriously injured in the accident, and both of their wives died. Two other young children were transported to the hospital after the accident and remain in critical condition.

The Indian embassy in Iceland confirmed the above details and has also been in touch with the brothers’ family in India. British friends of the family were expected to arrive in Iceland on Thursday night.

Icelandic Lamb Exported to India

Icelandic lamb

Icelandic lamb is now being exported to India for the first time. The first shipment was sent in early October and more are planned in the coming weeks. The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority has been working on making the export possible for two years. RÚV reported first.

The Indian market laid down a number of special requirements for import of the product. Only lamb from areas of Iceland where scrapie has never been diagnosed. Scrapie is a fatal disease that affects sheep and tends to persist in flocks. The meat must also be separated from other lamb during processing and storage.

The export license which has been granted is valid for six months and five tonnes of lamb. The contract is valid for one particular importer in India and the meat will be sourced by one slaughterhouse and processing plant. There are hopes to expand the project if the lamb is well-received.

This is the second large market to open to Icelandic lamb in a short time, as a contract for export to China was signed this fall.