An environmental disaster is looming after the sinking of Concordia
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An environmental disaster is looming after the sinking of Concordia

Marseille : France | Jan 17, 2012 at 1:58 AM PST
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Cruise ship runs aground in Italy, at least 3 dead - BBC Breakfast coverage 2 - January 14, 2011

After the sinking of the Costa Concordia, in the middle of a nature reserve of the Tuscan Archipelago, the anger swells in Italy against the "giants of the sea" cruise ships disfiguring and endangering the coast, up 'at the Venice lagoon.

The concern was high Monday as the consequences for the local fauna and flora, the presence of the gigantic mass of Costa Concordia within 50 meters of the island of Giglio. The ship contains more than 2,000 tons of diesel and gradually releases a lot of objects in its hull: refrigerators, furniture, pieces of carpet.

In the shock of the disaster, many voices were raised calling for greater respect safety distances or simply prohibit the entry of these giants as tall as a 10-storey building in the most fragile areas.

"Enough, stop managing these ships as if they were simple vaporetti" These kinds of floating buses circulating in Venice, said Environment Minister Corrado Clini, promising to act to "prevent these giant vessels from approaching sensitive areas for the environment."

In an interview Monday in La Stampa, however, he stressed that "the rules and limits already exist" and should be especially "convince" the companies to respect and not to "give priority to the tourism offer of the attention to the area crossed. "

Three senators of the Democratic Party (left) claimed the government an "emergency order to prohibit cruise ships and supertankers to pass near sensitive areas, whether in the Lagoon of Venice, in marine protected areas or near the islands. "

A committee was born a few months ago to prohibit the entrance of the basin to San Marco in Venice "giants of the sea" who call regularly for a total of 1.6 million passengers per year.

Demonstrations against the damage attributed to them (Seabed erosion, emissions, vibrations by moving sediment) are scheduled throughout the month of January each passing ship.

he association Marevivo also denounced the practice "proven and diffuse" of passing cruise ships too close to the coast "to create a scenographic effect both on board and ashore."

Marevivo demanded in particular that large ships are banned from high traffic areas and environmentally sensitive as "the channel of Piombino, that of Giglio, the Strait of Bonifacio (Corsica, France) as part of the sanctuary and more (from protection) of cetaceans. "

The Tuscan Archipelago (Elba, Giglio, Capraia, Montecristo, Pianosa, Giannutri, Gorgon) since 1996 as the largest marine park in Europe.

"This boat had strayed off course from 3 nautical miles (5 km), perhaps he wanted to experience the thrill of the lights of the Giglio at hand, the landscape nearby, we saw how it was over, "protested Mario Tozzi, geologist environmental scientist and former president of the protected park, noting that" tourism can not rhyme with unconsciousness. "

The ship's captain Francesco Schettino is accused of passing a few hundred meters from the coast very rocky Giglio to the "inchino" reverence, a veteran of his company Costa Crociere armatrice, or perhaps to "pleasure" to a charge of servers, a native of Giglio.

For Mr Tozzi should be banned outright super-tankers and cruise ships of the sanctuary for cetaceans, triangle that goes from the Riviera to Corsica through the Tuscan coast.

In 2010, more than 850,000 people left the cruise, 83% in the Mediterranean. Costa Concordia, out of Civitavecchia, near Rome, was to make a one-week cruise on "citrus scent", with stops in Italy and in Marseille, Palma de Mallorca and Barcelona. AFP

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The cruise ship was headed for Marseille and Barcelona
The cruise ship was headed for Marseille and Barcelona
rsa76 is based in Karāchi, Sind, Pakistan, and is a Reporter on Allvoices.
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