Major cruise lines have established targets for cutting carbon emissions and increasing sustainability. Technology is helping reduce the environmental footprint of cruising, with new developments such as scrubbers that reduce tailpipe pollution, more efficient hull and propeller designs, better water filtration, and a shift from diesel fuel to liquid natural gas.
Some new ships are being designed to run on cleaner alternate fuels, including liquid natural gas (LNG), which has low sulfur emissions, explains Bryan Salerno. As of Jan. 1, the whole world of shipping, including cruise ships, is required to lower pollutants using either EGCS, using a lower-sulfur fuel, or using an alternate fuel source. Cruise Lines International Association has also supported the move of the International Maritime Organization, to ban ships from using fuels that contain more than 0.5% sulfur by 2020. Carnival Cruise Lines has also adopted cleaner fuel technologies that lower carbon dioxide and other pollutants.
Down the road, starting in 2022, Carnival has plans to use liquid natural gas as a propellant in four of its future World Class Cruise ships, too. While just four ships are currently operating with LNG, 52% of ships in the order books are planned to utilize this fuel, which CLIA sees as a bridge to lower-carbon solutions including biofuels, synthetic fuels, ammonia, and methanol. Continued efforts include the launch of the worlds first cruise ship powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), the most advanced fuel technology in the shipping industry; addition of high-tech shore-based electric generating capabilities; expansion of use of onboard advanced Wastewater Management systems; biodigester technologies for food waste; and Advanced Air Quality systems. Examples include using LNG as a propellant and introducing the first cruise ships powered by LNG, exhaust gas scrubber systems, Advanced Wastewater Purification systems, Air Lubrication systems, and dedicated paint finishes for reduced fuel use, efficient engines, the use of shore-based power, shore-based power, shore-based electrical power, the use of shore-based power, and more.