Seven Attachés from Permanent Representations to the EU visiting South Italy for low-emission mobility in the Mediterranean

Fondazione CS MARE guided the delegates of 7 EU Member States of the Mediterranean on a four-day technical visit between Naples and Sicily, exploring solutions to promote alternative fuels in the “Mare Nostrum”

Catania, 11 June 2019 – The aim of the four-day visit was to experience the current difficulties in the diffusion of alternative fuels, firstly Liquefied Natural Gas, in the Mediterranean and to explore possible long, medium and short-term steps to face them, starting from the optimisation of LNG supply and distribution logistics.

Aware of the urgent need to spread green mobility along the ScanMed corridor as a strategic axis connecting the Baltic Sea to the Mediterranean, the 7 Attachés (Maritime, Transport, Shipping and Energy) of 7 Mediterranean countries – Italy, France, Cyprus, Portugal, Spain, Malta and Greece – gathered in the South of Italy for a technical visit between Naples and Sicily organised by Fondazione CS MARE.

“South Italy is today at the forefront of alternative fuels, as shown in the new Book of Fondazione CS MARE “Destination low-emission Mobility in the Mediterranean: the Sicilian route”: in this area we can find all the necessary elements to facilitate the diffusion of a greener and more efficient transport, and to act as a bridge spreading LNG benefits in the whole basin”, declared the President of Fondazione CS MARE Evelin Zubin, “but there are still obstacles slowing down the wide diffusion of LNG in maritime and road transport: first of all, the difficulty of gas supply and the high cost of the logistics required to ensure its availability in the territory, thus jeopardising the creation of a distribution infrastructure network”.

During these intense four days, on Saturday 8 June the delegates visited the training centre IMAT in Castelvolturno, (Naples): here they experienced the LNG-fuelled vessels bridge and engine simulator and explored the necessary actions to train the new green mobility professionals, needing specific competences in alternative fuels management, together with the impact of alternative fuels on employment and the territory.

Yesterday visit included a meeting with the Port Authority of Catania and Augusta and the Port Authority of Messina: the latter in particular is developing the innovative refuelling system called “truck-to-ship”, where heavy duty vehicles refuel berthed ships with gas via ISO-container. The delegates then crossed Messina’s strait on board of “Elio”, the first LNG-fuelled ferry in the Mediterranean, owned by Caronte&Tourtist.

The crossing offered the opportunity to get insights on the state of the art, the needs and best practices to make LNG supply and distribution logistics in the Mediterranean more efficient. The goal is to move towards an increased uniformity of regulations and procedures, spreading good practices which allow the constructive dialogue to facilitate the deployment of compatible systems, together with a uniform application of the existing rules.

Watch the video of the technical visit:

AdSP of the Sea of Eastern Sicily, attachés, Caronte e Tourist, Castelvolturno, Catania, ferry Elio, Fondazione CS MARE, IMAT training center, LNG, low emission mobility, Mediterranean, Messina, mobility, Naples, ScanMed corridor, Sicilian route, skill building, technical visit

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