Situated at the entrance of the Mediterranean Sea, Gibraltar has long been a key military fuel storage site.
Now Gibraltar's chief minister says the use of floating storage for bunker fuel should be cut back or even phased out.
The government has a medium to long-term aspiration to reduce and if possible eliminate floating bunker storage, Peter Caruana comments.
Concurrently, the government is considering plans to re-activate the King's Lines military tank farm was one of the options.
King's Lines, which was built in 1954 for the British Navy, is currently not in use but sources say it has the capacity to store some 250,000 tonnes of product.
The government has received four or five applications. The King's Line storage terminal is set inside the rock that dominates Gibraltar. It was last used by the bunkering arm of Chevron.
In particular there would need to be marine access to discharge tankers and load bunker barges. The terminal was previously served from Gibraltar's North Jetty but that jetty is now predominately used by cruise ships.
Gibraltar's bunker suppliers delivered nearly 4.7 million tonnes of product in 2009, up from 4.2 million in 2008. Bunkering is key part of the territory's economy.
Gibraltar's bunker market is currently served by three floating storage vessels, an arrangement that has come under attack from Spanish politicians and environmentalists who argue they present a heightened risk of oil spills.