Ship emissions in Marseille: In the Dirt of the crusaders

In Marseille, more and more cruise pollute ships of the air. This will flush money into the coffers, but it has consequences for the environment and health. o

Ship emissions in Marseille: In the Dirt of the crusaders

In Marseille, more and more cruise pollute ships of the air. This will flush money into the coffers, but it has consequences for the environment and health.

on The rise: a cruise ship in the port of Marseille photograph: Boris Horvat/afp

MARSEILLE taz | The cruise of the economic miracle came about rather unexpectedly. Even seven years ago, experts predicted that the port of Marseille, the inexorable decline. Since the 90s, France's gateway to the Mediterranean sea, which is called since 2008, proud of the Grand Port Maritime de Marseille (GPMM), around a third of its market share, and the half of the container TRANS had lost ports at the competition in Genoa and Barcelona. In the ranking of the most important ports in Europe, Marseille has slipped from third to fifth place. Only the traditional ferry traffic to Corsica, and Algeria remained stable.

Now the port for many residents in the North of Marseille has become a nightmare: every Year, more than 500 cruise ships, with almost 1.5 million tourists. This year even more than 2 million people to land on the specially equipped Terminal. The immense pollutant emissions from charged to well-being, the environment and health. The economy of the city, however, brings the every year, more than 300 million euros.

In the garden of the Villa of Michèle and Claude Rauzier, the oleanders are in bloom in the late summer. The pensioners also have enviable views of the sea. But the couple is no longer profitable for a long time: "When we were kids, we had the same below the garden of the sea," recalls Michèle, who grew up in this neighborhood of Saint-Henri and the Mourepiane. It shows an accusing Finger at the three huge ships, the straight are on the horizon to the pier, Léon Gourmet at anchor. From the huge chimneys, smoke plumes rise into the azure blue sky. They act as disturbing veil on the Mediterranean idyll.

If, as is most of the time, the Wind is blowing from the sea, have Michèle and Claude just like their neighbors, the nose, in a sense, directly in the exhaust of the cruise ships. The giants of the world's oceans look like transverse high-rise buildings up to fifteen floors above the water. Aesthetic and economic Benefits for these vessels, there are different perspectives, unacceptable for the residents of the pollutant emissions is nitrogen oxide, sulfur and fine particles.

Since 2017, the NGO France Nature Environnement alerted values with their measurement: In the direct vicinity of the port, the fine particles are due to the used as fuel Heavy fuel oil a hundred times in the air than in the more distant city centre, with its legendary traffic jams, is. Since 2018, the nitrogen oxide emissions of the berthing of ships surpasses those of the entire road transport from Marseille, warns AtmoSud, is a public-law Association that measures the daily air quality in the South of France Region.

the Problem of air pollution caused by the big cruise ships used cheap, but a particularly dirty fuel oil is long known. In June 2019, the European Federation has informed for clean transport, Transport & Environment, the content of sulfur oxide in this heavy fuel oil to 1,500 times higher than is tolerated in the Diesel for private vehicles. In addition, the American industry leader producing alone and the Carnival Corporation, with its swimming tourism industry on the European coasts as much sulphur dioxide as the 260 million cars.

but little was Done, especially in the South of France, there are mandatory rules which apply hardly. The vessels that have switched from heavy oil to liquefied petroleum gas, remain a rare exception. The connection of the anchored ships to the electricity network is in its infancy, but, as the GPMM-Directorate on taz's request said that a "priority" for the coming years. So far, the promotion of the flourishing apparently in the marine priority to tourism.

"I have said nothing against tourism", Michèle Rauzier, who is a member of the self-help Association Cap you Nor" the interests of the inhabitants of this Northern district. "But I'm not a tourist at any price". Now for nearly 25 years, governing mayor of Marseille Jean-Claude Gaudin, had taken "nothing at all for us. On the contrary,“ scolds Rauzier. For the chief of the Ratshauses applicable: "All the money for the centre and the prosperous South of the city, for the Northern neighbourhoods, the poverty, the social housing – with all the associated problems and the industry", says Rauzier.

The local elections in the spring, let's hope, because Gaudin's finally in retirement. Of the many claimants to his succession, only a few speak to the local politically sensitive issue of the cruise ships. One of them is the from of the Parti Socialiste leaked Samia Ghali is. It is, as the district's mayor of 15. and 16. It is faced directly with the question. In the city Council had already warned with drastic words: "Four ships, the let their machines at the same time with heavy fuel oil to run, which is a real cancer factory!"

Rauzier can confirm this only, because a third of the approximately twenty active members of your Association with cancer. The suspicion that there is a correlation with the air pollution, it is obvious for you, can you prove that but it is difficult. The letter carrier makes his rounds in their neighbourhood, has its own, very grim "statistics". He points to the houses in the last few months, several people of cancer, had died. And he is glad to soon be able to own in retirement.

Updated Date: 01 February 2020, 16:00

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