Among the solutions being examined by the coastal shipping sector for its sustainability during this difficult period is cutting fuel costs and reducing pollution through the installation of new engines that use liquefied natural gas (LNG).
Coastal shippingís adoption of LNG technology has been a priority on a European level for a while now and the local sector is hoping to secure subsidies to fund the replacement of older conventional engines with the new ones, although, technically, only a part of the existing fleet will be able to be fitted with the new engines. Subsidies would be essential for the plan to be implemented as the coastal shippers cannot afford to cover the costs alone.
About a year ago the prime ministerís adviser for shipyards, Nikos Anastasopoulos, tabled a proposal to the ministries of Development, National Defense and Merchant Marine for Greek shipyards to start innovative programs in this direction. Merchant Marine Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis is said to be in favor of the plan, which will also reactivate the countryís shipbuilding sector.