Italo-American consortium Titan-Micoperi has presented its plan to remove the wreck of Costa Concordia from the coast of the Isle of Giglio.
Following a conference convened by the commissioner, during which the relevant authorities provided the necessary permits, the work will begin in a few days and is expected to last about 12 months.
Titan Salvage, part of the Crowley Group, is an American-owned specialist marine salvage and wreck removal company and is a world leader in its field.
Micoperi is a well-known Italian marine contractor with a long history as a specialist in underwater construction and engineering.
The plan to refloat the hull in one piece gives top priority to minimizing environmental impact, protecting Giglio’s economy and tourism industry, and maximizing safety.
Environmental protection will have top priority throughout the monumental salvage operation, the likes of which has not been attempted before anywhere in the world. Once removal is complete, the sea bottom will be cleaned and marine flora replanted.
The plan also includes measures to safeguard Isola del Giglio’s tourism industry and wider economy.
Salvage workers’ presence will not have a significant impact on the availability of hotel accommodations for the island’s summer season.
The operating base will be located on the mainland near Piombino, where equipment and materials will be stored, avoiding impact on the island’s port activities.
Once floated, the wreck will be towed to an Italian port and dealt with in accordance with the requirements of Italian authorities.
“From the early stages of the accident, Costa Crociere has fully committed its resources, professional expertise and organization to minimizing the impact of the shipwreck on the environment and on Isola del Giglio in particular,” said Gianni Onorato, Costa president.
“As was the case with the fuel-removal operation, we have always worked to find the best possible and safest solution to protect the island, its marine environment and its tourism industry.
“We are now launching a salvage operation with characteristics and technical complexities that have never been faced before.
“There will inevitably be some unknowns in a project of this scope, but we are sure we have made the right decision and will continue to work to our best ability and on schedule.”