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Ibiza: Gas in the Pipeline

The enormous logistical and multi-million Euro project

The enormous logistical and multi-million Euro project to bring gas to Ibiza by undersea pipeline has reached another milestone. On Sunday a gigantic pipeline laying platform arrived in San Antonio accompanied by a flotilla of auxiliary vessels to commence laying the pipes along the sea bed.


The first stage will be the stretch between Denia on the mainland and San Antonio. Stage two will link Ibiza to Mallorca, and later Menorca will be connected to the system.


Not only will piped gas be more convenient for island dwellers, but it will also be more environmentally friendly, allowing a reduction of 70,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.


The hulking platform, The Castoro Sei, which now dominates the coastline near Cala Gracio is 152 metres long by 70 metres wide and can lay pipes up to 60 inches in diameter. Owned by the specialist Saipem Company, it also has a helicopter pad, two rotating gantry cranes and a 'flotel' facility to accommodate 330 people!


The immense logistical demands of the operation dictate that a small fleet of vessels is required – tugs, personnel transport boats, cargo ships to transport the pipes, vessels equipped for welding the pipes and so on. The seas between San Antonio and the islands where the sun sets are an unrecognisable hive of activity at the moment.


One day in the future, when we're making a cup of tea using piped gas, we'll say it was all worth it.

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