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dead but not gone

Where do old boats go to die? The cynical answer is they are put on eBay for a few pennies in the hope that they will become someone else’s problem.

As a marine biologist, I am increasingly aware that the casual disposal of boats made out of fiberglass is harming coastal marine life. The problem of end-of-life boat management and disposal has gone global, and some island nations are even worried about their already overstretched landfills.

The strength and durability of fiberglass transformed the boating industry and made it possible to mass produce small leisure craft (larger vessels like cruise ships or fishing trawlers need a more solid material like aluminium or steel). However, boats that were built in the fiberglass boom of the 1960s and 1970s are now dying. Read on.