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Venice finally bans cruise ships on the lagoon



(CNN)— For those sailing in the Mediterranean, this is one of the most unforgettable sights: the city of Venice is peeling under the boat, and the century-old buildings and bell tower are dwarfed by the boat, allowing bystanders to have a bird’s eye view .

But for many people ashore, the cruise ships in Venice have already symbolized the surplus of modern tourism. This kind of cruise ship can release thousands of tourists to a city that does not have the ability to “improve and go” to visit the attractions, but does not spend any money on the local economy.

Over the years, the movement of expelling cruise ships from the lagoon has attracted increasing attention, with locals claiming that the huge structure of these ships eroded the seabed, effectively turning the lagoon into a branch of the Adriatic Sea.

And now, finally, the Italian government has reached an agreement with them and passed a decree prohibiting the extraction of cruise ships and other large ships from the lagoon.

The government said in a statement to Reuters that the government hopes to “reconcile the need to protect the artistic, cultural and environmental heritage of Venice and its lagoon with the needs of cruise ship activities and cargo transportation”.
Italy’s Minister of Culture, Dario Franceschini, said on Twitter that it was “the right decision, and it has been waiting for many years.” He added that UNESCO had called for this in the past.

He said after the vote: “Anyone who has visited Venice in recent years was shocked to see these boats hundreds of meters long, as high as apartment buildings, but passing through such a fragile place.”

A new port in the Adriatic

The MSC Magnifica cruise ship passed near St. Mark's Square in the Venice Basin on January 23, 2011.

The MSC Magnifica cruise ship passed near St. Mark’s Square in the Venice Basin on January 23, 2011.

ANDREA PATTARO/AFP via Getty Images

The government will now conduct a public consultation on the possibility of building a wharf outside the lagoon.

This means that the previous plan to transport ships to Marghera and Fusina could neither be on the mainland nor within the Venetian Lagoon.

Previously, the authorities had agreed to evacuate large ships from the St. Mark’s Basin and the Judeca Canal. These ships are only a few meters away from the city center, but they must dock in Marghera.

However, this is not enough for sportsmen, who say that the presence of large boats in the lagoon is destroying the environment.

In recent years, the successive floods are partly due to global warming, but partly to the erosion of the lagoon.

In recent weeks, the tension between professional and anti-type cruise ships has been intensifying.

More than 4,000 locals work in the port and are among the Venetians who lost their livelihoods during the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, with the support of UNESCO, others have stated that the ecological damage caused by cruise ships and the excessive tourism caused by them must bear greater responsibility.

Just last month, the No Grandi Navi pressure group was fined 20,000 euros ($23,500) for blocking three cruise ships from exiting the port in 2017. The fines paid by crowdfunders included donations from actress Emma Thompson and others. Venice home. The team could not comment today.

Cinzia Zincone, Special Commissioner of the Maldives Adriatico Settentrionale Port of the Western Sima Autonomous Region, which is in charge of the Port of Venice, said in a statement to CNN that it will guarantee that Maintain “cooperation” when looking for new solutions, but warn that any proposal “must respect” safety standards, environmental compatibility, and protect the nature of Venice’s own port in the cruise industry. “

Last month, a government committee ruled in December that large ships should call at the port, but smaller ships can continue to use the current city port, which had previously started tendering for the design of a new cruise terminal in Marghera.

“Sustainable Capital”

The Venetians have become accustomed to a city that is dwarfed by ships.

The Venetians have become accustomed to a city that is dwarfed by ships.

Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images

Most Venetians are hopeful about the news. Valeria Duflot, the founder of the social enterprise Venezia Autentica, called it “positive news” but added: “This should not be a green cleaning, but a real move in the right direction. step.”

She called on the city and port authorities to ban any new channels dug in the lagoon, and to establish “cold ironing infrastructure” so that the ship can be connected to power when docking, instead of keeping the engine running.

She also called on cruise lines to provide financial support for the new port and called for the introduction of a “low-impact shuttle system” to conduct tenders to bring passengers into the lagoon.

She added: “Venice claims to be a sustainable capital.”

“Regulating the cruise industry is a key step in achieving this goal. As one of the main ports in the Mediterranean, Venice has the right to move its pointer.

“We ask this city to be brave and set an example.”

This is not the first time the authorities have tried to ban cruise ships.

When the Italian government fell shortly afterwards, the Italian government’s initiative to redirect large ships in 2019 failed.




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