Green Cruises for all year around holidays!
When it comes to environmental standards and the sustainable travel of the future, everybody thinks about electric cars, trains and public transport.
Because of cheap flights, personal travel by ships is not as attractive as it was in the past. On the other hand, short trips and pleasure cruises are now a mass market for tourism.
Goods transport by ships is cheaper than by air, so no wonder that more than 90 % of the world’s traded goods travel by water.
Because of that, you can imagine the impact of all these ships and cruises have on our environment.
These whopping floating resorts are responsible for 3% of greenhouse gas emissions, since they are burning at least 150 tonnes of fuel every day!
A Friend’s of the Earth’s report card assessed cruise lines and graded them between A and F. Mickey Mouse’s floating magic and Norwegian Cruise line earned A’s, the rest of them are not so bright.
To fight and conquer all these polluting emissions, keep our oceans clean and by simply being responsible the cruise industry needs to take some revolutionary steps! Don’t forget that clean and turquoise oceans and beaches are also essential to a cruise experience.
Let’s see what are the cruise and shipping industries can do:
- Use of modern sailing technology to reduce fuel use
- Advanced wastewater treatment systems that can produce water cleaner than most wastewater treatment facilities in U.S. cities
- Solar panels on ships
- Fabric bags—including laundry, dry cleaning and shoe shine bags—in lieu of plastic bags
- Ecological, non-toxic, slick hull coatings that save fuel usage
- Reclaimed condensation from shipboard air conditioning units used to wash decks
- E-tickets to deliver cruise documents to guests electronically
- High-efficiency appliances, including TVs, coffee makers, ovens and dishwashers
- Self-generating water, including drinking water, used onboard.
There is also a need for these swimming mansions to look at using alternative fuels instead of very polluting of heavy marine oil. Liquefied natural gas (LNG) would be the most readily available option, although it doesn’t do much for CO2 emissions and would need replacing with a truly low carbon fuel eventually. Royal Caribbean will be having its first LNG fleet in 2022.
Talking about Royal Caribbean they have other tricks up their sleeve. Celebrity Solstice uses solar energy with 216 solar panels to operate roughly 7000 LED lights around the ship.
Celebrity Solstice, Celebrity Equinox and Celebrity Eclipse utilize two types of solar panel technology: solar foils glued on various free deck areas and glass solar panels that have been installed in glass structures, such as the ceilings of the solarium and atrium.
We already mentioned Disney and Norwegian Cruise Line as the leaders of the green voyage. Let’s see what they up to:
Ulstein Verft in Norway has been awarded the contract to build a hybrid ferry for Colour Line, starting in 2019.
She will be the largest plug-in hybrid ferry, where the batteries are recharged via a shore – power with green electricity from shore or can be recharged onboard by the ship’s generators.
All four Disney ships: Wonder, Magic, Dream and Fantasy, leave and impressive small footprint for such enormous boats.
Disney Fantasy is the newest out from the 4, let’s see what Mickey and his friends are up to when it comes to environmentally conscious steps:
- Turns Sea Water into portable water – great example the Mickey Pool!
- Recycles water for new purposes
- Reuses food grease as fuel for vehicles on Castaway Days
- Donates money to the Disney Worldwide Conservation fund
- Hull coating on all Disney ships
- Recycles everything and trades plastic for cloth
Bonus for Mickey that all for 4 ships have an environmental officer on board!
In the near future, it is most likely impossible to run all these ships by purely renewable means, but there are a few methods and tricks out there that are starting to be adopted to generate less pollution to our already hard-working Earth.
Maybe one time in the future, away we can use all the transport available for us running on renewable means only.
Until then, sun cream on, vote with your wallet and your feet. choose a green cruise, cocktail in hand, feet in the pool and set sail! Bon Voyage!