The government calls for two 100 ME projects to invest in the marine economy

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The government calls for two 100 ME projects to invest in the marine economy

The Secretary of State for the Sea today announced that the government has requested the reprogramming of funds from the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) for two investment projects in the sea economy, with an overall investment of 100 million euros,

Speaking to the Lusa news agency at the end of the “Ocean: People and Opportunities” initiative, which today marked World Oceans Day in Viana do Castelo, José Maria Costa said that “one of the initiatives, with a budget of 50 million euros, provides for the deepening of studies on the Portuguese coast” linked to “knowledge in the field of oceanic renewable energies, but also in marine knowledge”.

“This is important work that will enable Portuguese research centers and institutes to develop and gain a better understanding of our coastline”, stressed the Minister.

The Secretary of State for the Sea revealed that the second project, also with an investment of 50 million euros, concerns “Green Shipping”.

“This is essentially a very important bet on the decarbonization of maritime transport and the support of national pilot projects by research centers” for the change of use from “fossil fuels to other fuels”.

“It’s also a very important signal that we want to give to Portuguese shipowners who operate links between the continent and the autonomous regions, giving them the opportunity to improve transport systems, particularly with regard to fossil fuels”, he stressed.

José Maria Costa declared that the government was making “a very strong bet” on this change “because maritime transport has a significant weight in C02 [carbon dioxide] emissions at international level”.

José Maria Costa
José Maria Costa

“Portugal wants to give a very important signal by showing that it is aware of these emissions and wants to reduce them”, he stressed.

According to José Maria Costa, these two initiatives, “among many others, such as an innovation and research project for the Selvagens Islands in Madeira, have been submitted to the European Commission and should be approved by the end of July”.

The Atlantic OFFSHORE Wind Energy AOWINDE project, from the Galicia-North Portugal Euroregion and funded by the INTERREG program, was presented at the session held at the Viana do Castelo Sea Center, aboard the Gil Eannes museum ship.

Maria Campos, innovation technician at ASIME – Galicia’s Association of Metal Industries and Associated Technologies, explained to Lusa that the cooperation project, with a budget of 1.8 million euros, aims to develop all the studies required for the physical implementation of an offshore wind farm.

“The aim is to carry out a virtual wind farm pilot project that will enable us to assess the technological, environmental, social and economic impact of a real installation of this infrastructure,” explained Maria Campos.

AOWINDE, which began in January and is due to end in 2025, aims, in a second phase, to install an offshore wind farm to serve the Euroregion.

The project, which is being developed by a public-private consortium, “aims to examine the need to improve the competitiveness of Europe’s net-zero emissions industry and support the rapid transition to climate neutrality”.

In addition to ASIME, the consortium also includes the Associação dos Industriais Metalúrgicos, Metalomecânicos e Afinsins de Portugal, the Junta de Galiza, the Instituto Energético de Galiza, the Universities of Vigo and Corunha, the Câmara de Viana do Castelo, the Instituto Politécnico de Viana do Castelo, INESCTEC and CATIM – Centro de Apoio Tecnológico à Indústria Metalomecânica (Centre for Technological Support to the Metallurgical and Mechanical Industry).

The session included the presentation of the seven axes that integrate the Viana do Castelo action plan of the Agenda Mar 2030.

Miguel Marques, from Skipper&Wool, highlighted “the creation of an international technology center for offshore renewable energies and an integrated platform for sustainable development and the acceleration of blue innovation anchored in the seaport”.

He also mentioned the need to “capitalize on blue reindustrialization, through shipbuilding, repair and conversion, promote the maternity of marine life, through aquaculture and sustainable fishing, create a network of promoters of the sea economy”, These are just some of the main lines of the action plan he presented, which were identified by a working group bringing together a number of entities from different fields, including research and development, fishing, boating, tourism and the hotel industry.

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