North Adriatic Sea Port Authority (NASPA): Achieving emissions reductions through dialogue with cruise companies

30 April 2021

With the aim of reducing emissions around Venice, the North Adriatic Sea Port Authority (NASPA) instituted the Venice Blue Flag (VBF) agreement in 2007. The agreement brings together the main cruise companies, the Venice Harbour Master, the Venice Municipality and NASPA itself to promote the adoption of fuels with low-sulphur content. This agreement has been renewed yearly since 2007 and was strengthened in 2019 to prescribe that the engines of cruise vessels shift to fuel with 0.1%m/m sulphur as they approach the Lido Inlet and enter in the Venice Lagoon. The benefits of the VBF are clear: as well as a clear improvement in the air quality in the bay area, the reduction in terms of marginal external costs has been estimated at €2 million, clearly outweighing the increase in costs related to the adoption of distillate fuel (between €1.1 million and €1.5 million). The experience of the VBF has demonstrated to NASPA the effectiveness of grass-roots agreements between all stakeholders as an effective solution balancing environmental, economic and social aspects.

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