LNG “Elio” ship rise to four for the italian Caronte Group
29 Sep 2021 - ConferenzaGNL
In recent interventions Lorenzo Matacena, CEO of Caronte & Tourist, the italian ship owner which also includes the Siremar company for ferries to Aeolian, Ustica, Egadi, Pantelleria and Pelagie around Sicily island, also from Naples, has announced the order for two more “Elio”, the LNG ferry active since November 2019 in the Strait of Messina forced to use diesel fuel, which is much more polluting, due to the absence of refueling points. A third ship of the series is under construction at the Sefine Shipyard in Yalova, Turkey, ordered last March by Caronte & Tourist Isole Minori for the Siremar routes to the Aeolian Islands.
The Group, the absolute pioneer in Italy of LNG maritime transport, thus brings to four LNG ferries in its fleet, destined to serve not only the connections in the Strait of Messina but also the smaller islands in the south and north of Sicily. The investment for the new ships rises to around 200 million euros. This decision also confirms for Italy, as is happening all over the world, that LNG is the only fuel compatible with international environmental standardization and that it can further improve its performance with the use of bioGNL, something that also the Sicilian shipowner has announced that he wants to do.
The competent port system authority has 30 million euros available to build an LNG refueling infrastructure. The recent publication of the guidelines of the Fire Brigade on technical rules for refueling liquid methane from ship to ship and from tanker to ship should now allow the local Port Authority to define the operational regulations, as it did last year (in advance on national regulation) by the La Spezia Harbor Office for refueling cruise ships. It should be noted that while the supplies of large cruise ships (as well as container ships and other increasingly large ships that use LNG) require thousands of cubic meters of fuel, a few hundred are enough for the ferries.
Lorenzo Matacena, declared, as reported by ANSA press agency: “Sustainable mobility does not depend only on us, but on the choices of the communities in which we also operate. So much so that the LNG supply of our Elio has been of a fact inhibited by choices that are alien to us. I am referring to the age-old question of the LNG depot that we had asked to build and which would also have been at the service of the trucks, which more and more are powered by LNG engines. A request still stuck at the stake . However, we do not stop ”. For the technical characteristics of the new ships, please refer to the previous news http://www.conferenzagnl.com/2021/07/in-costruzione-il-traghetto-gnl-ibrido-per-caronte/ on the topic of last July 16.