Sustainable cruise initiative picks up pace

Port of Venice A cruise ship at the Port of Venice. Image: Port of Venice

A group of European cruise ports has met to draw up guidelines for a new sustainable approach to maritime tourism.

Members of the ‘Cruise 2030’ working group confirmed their commitment to tackling environmental issues, especially on reducing emissions, with specific solutions being designed in the different ports.

The group was formed after Pino Musolino, president of the North Adriatic Sea Port Authority (NAPA), called for European ports to gather to discuss the economic and environmental impact of the cruise industry and draw up sustainable guidelines in August. Aside from NAPA, which includes the Port of Venice, those involved include Amsterdam, Palma de Mallorca, Bergen, Cannes, Dubrovnik, Malaga and Marseille Fos.

Compromise needed

It was decided that there is a need to find a workable and feasible compromise between the sizes of vessels and the geographical and physical characteristics of European ports; and there is a need to improve the organisational aspect of the whole cruise chain, in order to minimise the impact of congestions and of the negative effects on the urban mobility and the quality of life in each destination.

Other outcomes included the agreement that there is a need to assess in a scientific, fact-based, figure-based, manner the impacts and implications of the cruise industry on ports and their surrounding areas; and in doing so, there is the need to build a social, environmental and economic acceptability towards the industry from cities, regions and citizens.

The group, which met in Venice, agreed to work towards the drafting of a common action plan to address the economic and environmental impact of the cruise industry. The group aim to design a statement to approve collectively and adopt as a working document.

The next meeting will be held by the Port of Palma de Mallorca, in January.

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