Venice Blue Flag Agreement

  • October 13, 2021
  • Uncategorized

Cruise ships are committed to taking the strictest measures to reduce air pollution when entering the Venice Lagoon in Italy. The agreement, known as the “Venice Blue Flag II”, obliges cruise lines to operate the main and auxiliary engines of their ships carrying marine fuel with a sulphur content not exceeding 0.1% (lower than EU directives, which recently set limits of 0.5%), immediately after passing through the entrance to the port of Lido and crossing the lagoon`s maritime canals. On April 3, the ports of Venice, Chioggia, the Port Authority of Venice signed an agreement with 38 companies that sets out a number of rules to mitigate the impact of port activities. ??Following the first Venice Blue Flag agreement, signed in 2007, which provided for the use of special, less polluting fuels during docking, the new agreement with CLIA Europe, which represents the main cruise lines, and with strong support from Mayor Orsoni, provides for the use of “zero impact” fuel to enter the lagoon. For more than three years, the goal is to reduce the sulfur content of the fuel used around the port. The shipowners, who confirmed the first Venice Blue Flag with approval in 2007, have committed to use for the 2007 cruise season a fuel with a sulphur content of less than 2.5%, with an occasional margin of 0.5%. This should be seen in the context of the international standards of the IMO MARPOL Agreement, in particular Annex VI, which provided for a maximum sulphur content of 4.5% by fuel weight, which will be reduced to 1.5% for ships passing through special emission control areas. Since then, VPA has partnered with the National Research Council (CNR) to understand the impact of the Venice Blue Flag rule on ship emissions since it first came into force. Over the years, studies have shown a 32% reduction in sulphur emissions between 2007 and 2009, after the implementation of the agreement. In 2013, a new voluntary agreement (Venice Blue Flag II) was introduced to encourage cruise ships to use a sulphur content of 0.1% in Lido Inlet. The agreement is part of the “green” initiatives promoted by the Port of Venice, recognized for its innovative policy at European level and which will host the Green Port Conference next October. .

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