Port authority president lauds plan to develop 'Adriatic hub' for LNG bunkering

Venice prepares for LNG bunker demand with projects to build supply barge and terminal.

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Updated on 22 Jan 2018 14:47 GMT

The president of the North Adriatic Sea Port Authority, Pino Musolino, has heaped praise on a plan to develop the port of Venice into a key LNG bunkering location.

The North Adriatic Sea Port Authority has teamed up with Italian firm Rimorchiatori Riuniti Panfido to look into designing and building an LNG bunkering barge to supply ships calling at Venice's new LNG terminal.

Commenting on the Venice initiative, Musolino said: "I believe that sustainability and technology are two issues that must always go hand in hand. In this context, the new LNG terminal is an excellent example of this philosophy. For this reason, we have decided to support the initiative of two private companies with the aim to help promote the use of LNG as an alternative fuel, both in the port area and for land transport."

Musolino also noted that the maritime landscape would be changing in Italy over the coming years with the arrival of LNG-powered cruise ships and dual-fuel ferries, and suggested that the port will be able to benefit from the expected influx of new gas-ready vessels.

"Being able to count in Venice on a terminal set up for the supply of this new fuel will allow us to become the Adriatic hub for the supply of LNG to new ships," Musolino remarked.

The Port of Venice estimates that by 2030, demand for LNG at the port will be 873,000 metric tonnes per year, with 19.7 percent (approximately 171,981 tonnes) coming from maritime transport, 73 percent from road transport, and the remaining amount from port/local services.

The Venice project is being financed by the European Union under the GAINN4MOS initiative, which was set up to improve the Motorways of the Sea network in six member states (Croatia, France, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain) by carrying out engineering studies on ship retrofitting and/or construction, port LNG infrastructure, bunkering stations and pilot projects.

GAINN4MOS aims to pilot an LNG ro-pax ship in Italy, and LNG bunkering stations at the ports of Venice, Civitavecchia, Fos-Marseille, La Spezia and Nantes-St Nazaire.

Construction of Venice's LNG terminal could be financed by the EU's Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).