New report underpins cruise industry’s commitment to sustainable tourism

By Luke Barras-hill |

Fifty-two percent of new build capacity will rely on LNG fuel for primary propulsion – three percentage points higher in overall capacity compared with 2020, according to the report.

The publication of a new report has flagged the cruise industry’s focus on responsible tourism by using ‘greener’ technologies.

Cruise Lines International Association’s (CLIA) Global Cruise Industry Environmental Technologies and Practices Inventory and associated Environmental Report produced by Oxford Economics (OE) demonstrates the progress being made on implementing new environmental technologies.

CLIA member cruise lines have committed to pursuing net carbon neutral cruising by 2050 and a *40% reduction (versus 2008) in the rate of carbon emissions across the global fleet by 2030.

“While cruise has been one of the sectors most acutely impacted by the global pandemic, cruise lines remain at the forefront of the challenge to develop new environmental technologies which benefit the entire shipping industry,” commented Kelly Craighead, President and CEO of CLIA.

“Our industry is committed to pursuing net carbon neutral cruising by 2050 and CLIA and our ocean-going members are investing in new technologies and cleaner fuels now to realise this ambition.”


The OE report assesses the challenge posed by demand for alternative fuels such as LNG and the steps the industry is taking to support such progress.

CLIA says that in addition to LNG, over three-quarters of the global cruise fleet by passenger capacity is now equipped to use alternative fuels.

The cruise industry’s growing investment in new ships is facilitating the research and development of alternative fuels such as LNG and hydrogen. Click to enlarge. Source: CLIA/OE.

These include the likes of biodiesel, methanol, ammonia, hydrogen and electric batteries, though engineering, supply and regulatory hurdles remain before large-scale adoption of the fuels can take place, adds the report.

In addition, ocean-going cruise lines continue to make ‘substantial’ progress in areas including shore-side power capability using electricity to allow engines to be switched off in port; exhaust gas cleaning systems; and advanced wastewater treatment systems.

“This report shows that the cruise industry is resilient, innovative and focused on the future,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, Chairman of CLIA Global. “We know that there is more to be done but the cruise industry has shown both its commitment and its capability to rise to the challenge/

“The cruise industry is an enabler of green maritime innovation, which will be the key to decarbonisation of shipping. This is why CLIA has joined other maritime organisations to propose a $5 billion IMO research and development fund to accelerate the development of zero GHG fuels and propulsion technologies.”

*Consistent with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) carbon intensity reduction level of ambition.


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