Work on the new fuel storage complex being built by the Compañia Logística de Hidrocarburos (CLH) near the airport is scheduled to be be completed by autumn, so the facility, which will have a storage capacity of around 30,000 cubic metres of transport fuel, will be fully operational by the end of the year.
The company will then immediately start to demolish the buildings on its present site in Cala Figuera and decontaminate the land, a process which could take between six and eight months. The resulting site will be used for social activities linked to the port and town, according to Maó Council.
The President of CLH, José Luis López de Silanes, explained during a visit with local authorities to the depot last week that the work was "progressing according to schedule" and that 60% of the project had now been constructed. The fuel pipeline leading from the pumping station in the port of Maó to the new storage depot has been installed and only the connections between the pipe and the mooring points for tankers remain to be completed this spring. At the depot itself, the twelve storage tanks are now 45% completed.
Improved road safety
López de Silanes said that the 22 million euro project would be an important part of the island's infrastructure in the long term and would also increase safety on the roads by obviating the necessity for the 11,000 road tankers which last year transported the fuel from Maó to the airport. The project will also quadruple the fuel storage capacity in Menorca, raising it from 7,000 cu.m. to around 30,000 which will help to reduce the number of oil tankers unloading in the port of Maó from 52 per year to just over a dozen, as larger vessels will be used for this purpose.
The President of the Island Council, also present on the visit to the depot, stressed the increased safety factor resulting from removing 11,000 fuel-laden tankers from the town's traffic and underlined the importance of increasing Menorca's energy reserves. Marc Pons stated that the new depot is being erected on a site destined for this purpose and drew attention to the fact that the construction of the pipeline had been used as an opportunity to improve the rainwater drainage system on the Maó industrial estate.
Speaking during the same visit, the Mayor of Maó, Vicenç Tur, commented that the work on the CLH depot was an example of a "project well carried out" and referred to the social use, linked to the port and town, that will be made of the site in Cala Figuera once demolition of the existing storage facilty has been completed.