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The cruise industry and Venice – facts and prospects

September 23, 2017 - Yesterday, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), held a press conference in Venice, Italy, to present the industry local facts and prospects on behalf of its embers. The cruise industry employs nearly 4,300 people and provides business for 200 companies in and around Venice. Ships arriving in Venice generate a total of € 436.6 million annually at a national level, in terms of direct expenditure by passengers, companies and crews. Of this total, € 283.6 million are spent in Venice and in its territory and € 153 million are spent across Italy. Ships arriving in Venice also generate up to €170 million for related sectors (see ‘‘L’Impatto economico della Crocieristica a Venezia” ["The economic impact of the cruise industry in Venice"], by Professors Dosi, Musu, Rizzi and Zanette), accounting for 3.26% of the Municipality's GDP (4.1% of the workforce) and 0.96% of the Province's GDP (1.19% of the workforce).

The cruise industry is not simply good for the city's economy, but it is also focused on environmental best practices and sustainability to safeguard the natural resources and the cultural heritage of destinations like Venice for generations to come. Cruise lines are seriously committed in Venice, as they are everywhere else in the world, to preserving the beauty of the destination and its natural environment, which are both the right thing to do and an indispensable resource for the vitality and prosperity of the industry itself. CLIA member cruise companies voluntarily entered into the Blue Flag Agreement in Venice and have invested more than $1 billion in clean technologies with a view to improving environmental performances and further reduce the impact of emissions.

This is part of an ongoing process that continuously lowers the impact of existing and every new ship. These are the facts as reported in the latest study published by the Veneto Region’s Agency for the Environment – ARPAV. The study showed that vessel traffic generates 18% of fine particles, ferries and ships amounted to 12% and local traffic produced 14% of fine particles. More specifically, cruise ships were found accountable for 8% of emissions output during summer months, while the overall impact dropped to 2% in winter. It should also be pointed out that the highest level of fine particles was detected during winter when the cruise season is over.

The monitoring sensors positioned closest to where cruise ships pass through the Giudecca Canal (Sacca Fisola) recorded very high levels especially from February 15 to 24, 2017 with a pollution peak on 31 December 2016. From May to October, when the cruise season is in full swing, not one single irregularity was reported in the PM10 particulate detection, as shown in the 2014 Air Quality Annual Report published by the Municipality of Venice.

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