Recycling Program Enters New Phase

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The Rhode Island Marine Trades Association last year launched a pilot program to address end-of-life fiberglass boats. It was first boat recycling project in the nation.

Such programs have existed in other countries for some time. In the Netherlands, composite materials are repurposed into river and canal retaining walls. Italian researchers turn fiberglass into kitchen counters or flooring, and a French boat-dismantling and recycling network has shown encouraging results.

RIMTA’s Phase 1, which ended in 2019 was deemed a success, with more than 20 tons of vessels collected and recycled. The recycled materials were used as filler in the manufacturing of concrete and as an energy source, which has led to Phase 2 of the project.

“Facing the Legacy: Lifecycle Solutions for Fiberglass Boats,” a video that explains the program and the reasons for launching it can be seen here.



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