Short sea shipping transport wants to be included in the future Sustainable Mobility Act, as it ensures that Ro-Pax traffic, a substantial part of the transport, and continues to help the viability of various services. Through this, the integration of maritime transport into logistics chains would be facilitated. This is one of the measures proposed by the Shortsea Promotion Centre Spain (SPC Spain) following the last meeting of the working group on the Sustainable Mobility Act on the 3rd of July 2020. The meeting was also attended by Manuel Carlier and Elena Seco of Anave, Patricio Arrarte and Amaia Sarasola from the Santander Port Authority, Ricardo García from the Escola Europea Intermodal Transport, Laura Fernández from Feteia and Mario Massarotti and Antonio Vargas from Grimaldi Lines. Representing SPC Spain were Pilar Tejo and Marta Poza.
The office of the Spanish Secretary General of Transport and Mobility announced that the draft of the rules for the Sustainable Mobility Act should be ready before the end of the year, and in the meantime contributions from different entities are welcome. Among these, SPC Spain insisted on measures to better manage and increase the capacity of railroads and inland waterways. Moreover, to reflect the impact that the price of transport has on the environment, the entity proposed that subsidies for fossil fuels should disappear. Another proposal was “to regulate access to EU ports for the most polluting ships and to require that those at berth use electricity ashore”.
To improve sustainability, SPC Spain urged the Spanish government to adopt measures for the gradual reduction of emissions generated by the consumption of fossil fuels from ships, boats, naval devices and physical platforms when they are moored or anchored in ports.
Boosting the Motorways of the Sea
The Spanish government will propose the creation and consolidation of sustainable logistics chains with origin or destination in ports through strategic initiatives aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions in ports, as well as in maritime or land transport chains with origins or destinations in ports.
These initiatives will aim, among others, to improve energy efficiency and air quality in port facilities, the generation or procurement of renewable energy in ports, promoting rail transport to and from ports, promoting the development of the Motorways of the Sea, improving road access, and encouraging the use of alternative energy in maritime transport, with particular attention to the use of this type of energy on berthed ships, and in accordance with the provisions of the European Union legislation on state aid.
In its conclusions, the entities propose to promote greater use of the maritime mode, enhancing SSS and the Motorways of the Sea, while pointing to possible actions to reduce their environmental impact both at sea and on land (such as tax exemptions for marine fuels, extending European emissions trading to the maritime sector, using alternative fuels and using electricity from land on ships at in ports).
Proposals for the Sustainable Mobility Law
Within the scope of the Sustainable Mobility Law, the proposals include:
- Establishing that SSS in general and the Motorways of the Sea and regular roll-on roll-off transport lines in particular contribute effectively to the sustainability of the transport of goods (as it is the one that generates the least external costs to society) and to the necessary modal shift, therefore deserving to be the subject of governmental support measures.
- Establishing the Motorways of the Sea and regular roll-on roll-off transport as the ideal instrument for facilitating the use of the maritime mode to road operators
- The high number of port calls per year and their impact on the competitiveness of services (and therefore on their capacity to attract flows) makes them worthy of special treatment in ports.
- Reviewing and specifying the definition of the Motorways of the Sea, and the possibility of creating a national seal of Motorways of the Sea that entitles members to certain advantages.
- Establishing economic incentive measures aimed at stimulating the use of alternative fuels on berthed ships.
- Possible reduction or elimination of the T-3 freight tariff.
- Reduction in the cost of port services.
- Incentives for the joint operation of transport companies in order to minimize the limitations inherent in the small business size of many transport companies.
- Incentives for maritime intermodal operations for groups of companies.
- Greater time flexibility for road hauliers using the maritime mode.
Source: Naucher Global