Slovakia is to get a new Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminal worth €40 million aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and pollutants in inland waterway transport on the Danube river, according to state-owned investor Public Ports company.
Subject to approval of the environmental impact assessment, construction of the new terminal is expected to start in 2022 and be completed in 2026.
The LNG terminal will provide facilities for the bunkering for future vessels and the production of LNG as well as for the refuelling of heavy road vehicles.
No LNG-fueled ships are currently operating on the Danube to date. The Danube river at Bratislava has draft restrictions, with the largest barges currently using the port having drafts under 2m.
The LNG terminal in the port of Bratislava is part of the EU plan to build the Rhine-Danube transport corridor, which aims to provide an east-west link by connecting roads, railways, and inland waterways across continental Europe and make freight transport greener.
The terminal, which is to be located on the main course of the Danube less than 1 kilometre away from a highly densely populated area, would span across 5,500 square metres.
Environmental groups participating in the public consultation have said the project has the potential to increase the Slovak economy’s reliance on gas and requested an assessment of the project’s life-cycle emissions and compatibility with European climate policies.
Another concern is the fact the terminal is planned to be built relatively close to a densely populated area of the capital. According to the environmental groups, the project would also increase traffic and reduce air quality due to the trucks that would use the port’s planned LNG fueling truck station.