Today: Thursday, 25 April 2024 year

The Brazilian Navy sank its only aircraft carrier, the Sao Paulo.

The Brazilian Navy sank its only aircraft carrier, the Sao Paulo.

The Brazilian Navy sank its former aircraft carrier Sao Paulo in the Atlantic after it was banned from entering the country’s inland waters because of the risk of running aground, the agency said.

“Regarding the hull of the former aircraft carrier São Paulo… we inform you that the operation of the planned and controlled flooding was carried out today, February 3, strictly in accordance with the plan,” the Brazilian Navy said in a communiqué on its website.

The Brazilian Navy’s only aircraft carrier, São Paulo, was decommissioned and sold to the Turkish company Sök in 2021 for US$1.9 million. The new owner towed the ship to Turkey in the summer of 2022, where it was supposed to be dismantled, but upon arrival in the Mediterranean, local authorities withdrew the parking permit.

The aircraft carrier was taken back to Brazil, where they also refused to accept it, citing environmental and port security risks – there were already several holes in the hull, and it was taking on water, there was a risk of uncontrolled flooding.

In January, the Brazilian Navy took over operations related to the former aircraft carrier, which had been in the country’s territorial waters for several months.

According to the Navy, the ship was sunk 350 kilometers from the coast, at a depth of about 5,000 meters. The flooding area was chosen taking into account the safety for navigation and the environment, fisheries and ecosystems.

The Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources questioned the safety of sinking such a vessel for local ecosystems, given the significant amount of pollutants in its structure, including asbestos, chlorofluorocarbons, microplastic particles and heavy metals. The institute noted that countries such as Italy, Norway, Denmark and Turkey have accredited shipyards for the “green processing” of ships in accordance with the rules of the UN International Maritime Organization and the Basel Convention.