Venice officials have asked several of Europe’s other popular cruise destinations, including Amsterdam, Barcelona, Dubrovnik and Marseille to join them in working toward the enforcement of new rules that would require cruise lines to adapt their ships to reduce the potential for injury to people as well as environmental impact.
The MSC Opera suffered a mechanical issue before crashing into a Uniworld riverboat and a dock in Venice in early June, injuring at least four people, while video surfaced last month of the Costa Deliziosa narrowly missing a yacht and the dock while being towed by a tugboat during a storm.
“I have written to all European cities that share our experience with cruise tourism and that find themselves having to balance economic development with environmental sustainability,” Pino Musolino, chairman of the northern Adriatic Sea port authority, said in a statement Thursday.
“The growing size of vessels, their environmental impacts on the areas surrounding the ports and the ‘burden’ that the increasing number of tourists…are creating a situation of conflict,” he wrote in a letter to eight fellow port authorities.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site and bucket list destination for many, Venice is slowly sinking, with officials blaming cruise ships for contributing to the growing problem.
Venice is no stranger to over-tourism struggles with city officials implementing controversial policies to battle the frequent visitor crowds in recent years.
The city has even called on UNESCO to add Venice to the World Heritage site blacklist of endangered destinations.