This morning the first collection point for waste cooking oil produced by boaters was inaugurated in the port of Livorno. The 500-litre container was positioned in the pedestrian area of the Andana degli Anelli in the Porto Mediceo, in a clearly visible area to discourage improper use of the facility and waste being abandoned.
The inauguration was attended by the President of the North Tyrrhenian Port Network Authority, Luciano Guerrieri; the city councillor for the port, Barbara Bonciani; the second-in-command at the Maritime Directorate, Andrea Santini; and Nicola Ercolini, head of the vegetable oil unit at the Eco.Energy company, a concession-holder that manages the collection points in Tuscany and Liguria on behalf of the RenOils consortium as part of the “Save the Sea – recycle cooking oil” project promoted by the consortium and the Marevivo Onlus Association.
It is well known that getting rid of vegetable oil by flushing it down the sink or directly into the sea is a major source of pollution. One litre of oil can pollute an area of water of about 1,000 m2. ” Vegetable oil from recreational boating is not properly collected nowadays,” Mr Ercolini said. “People often tend to dump it and manage it incorrectly, sometimes throwing it directly into the sea. The oil collection service, on the other hand, will allow us to reduce environmental pollution and recover this waste as biofuel. We hope that services such as these will allow us to raise awareness among the population on the highly topical issue of protecting our environment.”
Councillor Bonciani shared the same opinion, emphasizing the importance of a project that “regards not only the port but also the city and can trigger responsible behavior among boaters that can be part of a vision of a small-scale circular economy that encourages a more eco-friendly approach to using this product.”
According to Mr. Guerrieri, the service is part of a logic which “we have been working on and trying to develop for some time now. We have enthusiastically joined the project promoted by Marevivo and RenOils. The recovery of vegetable oils in the nautical sector allows us to reduce the environmental impact and is part of many other environmental and energy initiatives that the Port Network Authority is trying to promote within the framework of the objectives of Agenda 2030.”
The President of the Port Authority pointed out how “thanks to our planning, the North Tyrrhenian ports have secured a 77million euro funding for the electrification of the quays in Livorno, Piombino and Portoferraio. At the same time, we have booked 32 million euros on a call for tenders published a few days ago by the Ministry for Ecological Transition and aimed at developing projects relating to the supply of electricity produced from renewable sources and the acquisition of electric vehicles.”