Italian authorities have approved a decree to stop large cruise ships entering the centre of Venice
According to bbc.co.uk, Italian ministers agreed that not only large cruise ships, but also container ships would now not be able to enter Giudecca Canal, which leads to St Mark’s Square in central Venice.
Cruise ships will now have to dock at Venice’s industrial port. However, a solution is being sought - the government will hold a ’call for ideas’ for an alternative cruise terminal in the city, said bbc.co.uk. Reuters reported that the decree calls for public consultations on building a terminal outside the lagoon where passenger vessels that are over 40,000 tonnes and container ships can berth without passing in front of Saint Mark’s square.
Italy’s Culture Minister Dario Franceschini has been quoted as saying that the move to ban cruise ships from Venice’s centre is "a correct decision, awaited for years". According to reports, a request by Unesco was one reason for the decree.
Those who oppose cruise ships entering the centre of the city argue that the ships cause pollution and erode the city’s foundations.
Over the years there have been previous attempts to ban cruise ships in the centre, but these have all failed or not been fully implemented.
Coronavirus restrictions mean that cruise ships are currently unable to enter Venice. This is not the only area to forbid cruise ships due to the coronavirus. Transport Canada has prohibited cruise ships carrying more than 100 people from operating in Canadian waters until 28 February 2022.
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