2020 Goal & Update

Carbon Footprint

Reduce the intensity of CO2e (equivalent carbon dioxide) emissions from our operations by 25% by 2020 relative to our 2005 baseline, measured in grams of CO2e per ALB-km.

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We have achieved a 24.8% reduction relative to our 2005 baseline and are ahead of schedule to meet our target.
Continuing our carbon footprint reduction we:

  • Delivered the first cruise ship in the world to be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) from pier side trucks while in port.
  • Ordered three additional ships bringing the total to seven LNG fueled new next-generation cruise ships to be delivered.
  • Expanded our partnership with Wärtsilä to include a long-term diesel engine maintenance agreement which also includes an energy-efficiency component.
  • Signed an agreement with Shell to supply LNG to our ships.

Exhaust Gas Cleaning Technology

Continue to improve the quality of our emissions into the air by developing, deploying and operating Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems across the fleet capable of reducing sulfur compounds and particulate matter from our ship’s engine exhaust.

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We continue to improve the quality of our emissions into the air by installing and operating Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems across the fleet. These systems significantly reduce sulfur compounds and particulate matter from our ship’s engine exhaust.

  • 59% of our fleet is equipped with Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems.

Cold Ironing Capacity

Increase Cold Ironing coverage of our fleet wide capacity in relation to future port capabilities.

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We continue to improve the quality of our emissions into the air by continuing to increase the cold ironing coverage of our fleet wide capacity.

  • 40% of our fleet is equipped with cold ironing capabilities.
  • Continue to use LNG for cruise ship cold ironing.

FY2016 Energy & Emissions Performance

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As part of our commitment to reducing our air emissions and improving air quality in the environments we visit, we are pioneering the use of LNG, the world’s cleanest fossil fuel, in port. We also executed:

  • A framework agreement with Shell Western LNG B.V to supply marine LNG to our ships.
  • An agreement with Meyer Werft for three new 180,000-ton cruise ships bringing the total to seven next-generation cruise ships on order that will be powered by LNG in port and at sea.
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Operational Efficiency

We have expanded our partnership and continuous improvement efforts with Wärtsilä to maintain the highest possible levels for cruise ship diesel engine safety and reliability by entering into a comprehensive, 12-year strategic agreement. The scope of the agreement includes all engine maintenance and monitoring for 79 vessels within our fleet of 102 vessels. The agreement is designed to reduce overall maintenance costs while at the same time increasing engine efficiency. As part of the agreement, engine-level efficiency and fuel consumption will be measured on a regular basis, providing improved transparency into engine performance that will result in further improvements to engine operations. The data provided will also allow for tailored optimization of the combustion process which will also improve the quality of our air emissions.

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Direct & Indirect Emissions

We quantify, report and verify our GHG emissions, including our direct (Scope 1) and indirect (Scope 2) emissions. Our direct GHG emissions were 99.5 percent of our total emissions. The emissions due to our ships’ fuel consumption represented the bulk of the direct GHG emissions (97.0 percent). Our indirect GHG emissions represents only .5 percent of total emissions, the bulk of which were attributed to electricity purchased to power our shore-based buildings.

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Scope 3 Emissions

We report our Scope 3 emissions in the CDP formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project since 2009. Scope 3 emissions are derived from the energy used in other upstream and downstream indirect emissions like business travel, passenger transportation from airports, fuel transport, waste disposal and deliveries of supplies. See Climate Change CDP Report for more information.

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The Nature Conservancy

We continue our partnership with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) with a $2.5 million investment commitment over a five year period which started in 2014. Our commitment supports important research for marine conservation in particular coastal blue carbon research. Blue carbon is the carbon stored and sequestered in coastal ecosystems such as mangroves, seagrass meadows or salt marshes. These valuable ecosystems hold vast carbon reservoirs. They capture carbon and then store it in their sediments, which helps mitigate climate change.

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Tracking and Data-Analysis Platform

We implemented a state-of-the-art tracking and data-analysis platform that enables real-time information sharing between our ships and specialized shoreside teams designed to support fleet operations. The proprietary system significantly improves communication from ship to shore, providing new capabilities for enhancing the safe passage of ships at sea while improving operational efficiencies and supporting overall environmental initiatives. The platform manages risks by providing the company visual representations of ships routing, real-time navigational notifications, integrated weather information and traffic information.

Exhaust Gas Cleaning Technology Update

funnel installation

In 2013, we announced our plans to install exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) on our ships. These systems remove sulfur compounds and particulate matter from our ships’ engine exhaust at any operating state of a ship – at sea, during maneuvering and in port. Due to the limited availability of EGCS for marine application, we decided to lead the way by developing the technology to successfully function in the restricted spaces available on cruise ships and by making the necessary investments, which includes $400 million to date, leading to a significant development in shipboard environmental technology.

As of FY2016, 59% of our ships are equipped with EGCS. These EGCS are open loop systems that use sea water for removing sulfur from engine exhaust. To further enhance our emissions profile we have also started to install a catalytic filter on the engine exhaust before the EGCS and also a filter before the sea water is returned to the sea. Our standard EGCS removes 99%  of sulfur and  well over 50% of the particulate matter, including elemental and organic carbon. The Catalytic filter and other systems further reduce the particulate matter by over 30% and also reduce nitrogen oxides by 10%. All EGCS comply with international regulations and are certified by a classification society. In addition, all systems are equipped with continuous monitoring equipment to automatically record all required parameters.

Pioneering Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)

liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker

We are pioneering the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG), the world’s cleanest fossil fuel. In May 2016, our AIDA brand ship, AIDAprima, began bunkering LNG via truck in Germany. She is the first cruise ship in the world that regularly uses dual-fuel engines for an energy supply with LNG while in ports on her Northern European deployment. Her sister ship AIDAperla is scheduled to be delivered in 2017 with the same technology.

In 2016, we signed an agreement with Meyer Werft for three new 180,000-ton cruise ships bringing the total to seven next-generation cruise ships on order that will be powered by LNG at sea. Pioneering a new era in the use of low carbon fuels, these new ships will use LNG to generate 100% of their power both in port and on the open sea – an innovation that will reduce exhaust emissions to help protect the environment.

We also signed a framework agreement with Shell Western LNG B.V. to supply marine LNG to our ships. Under the framework agreement, Shell will initially supply our AIDA Cruises and Costa Cruises brands. The ships will utilize Shell’s infrastructure in cruise ports to refuel with LNG throughout their itineraries.

Switching from marine diesel to LNG


Sulfur Dioxide Emissions


Reduction in Nitrogen Oxides


Reduction in Particulate Matter


Reduction in Carbon Emissions

Our Commitment

We believe in communicating transparently about climate change. We actively participate in and contribute to the process of determining our industry’s role in addressing climate change. We have publicly disclosed our carbon footprint since 2006 and are taking specific and proactive steps to reduce this footprint. Energy is vital to our business so that guests can enjoy our facilities and our amenities on our ships while at sea and in port. Fuel is the primary source of energy consumed for the propulsion of our fleet and our on board hotel power requirements. Our shipboard fuel consumption contributes to more than 97% of our direct (Scope 1) and indirect (Scope 2) carbon emissions and is therefore the most significant contributor to our carbon footprint.

Our Strategy

In order to manage our emissions footprint, we must manage the source of our emissions. Shipboard fuel consumption is the most significant contributor to our carbon footprint. Therefore, we have implemented multiple energy-savings initiatives.

We established a Corporate Energy Conservation group charged with reducing our overall energy consumption. The goal of this group is to identify both current and long-term opportunities for saving fuel.

We are actively involved in new shipbuilding research and development for new abatement technologies and new equipment to improve energy efficiency. We continue to work on practical and feasible energy reduction and conservation initiatives to help us reach our target. We are investing in a broad range of voluntary energy reduction initiatives that meet or surpass the requirements of current laws and regulations. Reducing fuel and driving energy efficiency takes multi million-dollar investments and a multi-pronged strategy.

These include abatement technologies and equipment to further reduce engine emissions such as:

  • Air Lubrication Systems using air bubbles to reduce friction between the ship’s hull and the water.
  • Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS) that use proprietary technology to remove sulfur oxides and particulate matter from engine exhaust.
  • Alternative Fuels – Cruise industry first use of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), one of the world’s cleanest burning fossil fuels.

We quantify, monitor, report and verify our GHG emissions. We developed a GHG Inventory Management Plan (GHG IMP) in 2010 in accordance with the requirements of ISO 14064-1:2006 and The Greenhouse Gas Protocol. Our GHG emissions are independently verified by a third-party.

Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance Inc. (LRQA) certified our scope 1 and scope 2 GHG emissions inventory.

We continue to train and certify employees responsible for refrigeration and air-conditioning plants, use recovery units certified to meet refrigerant recycling and recovery requirements and implement programs to reduce Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) releases.

Energy & greenhouse gas emissions

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We are working to reduce the intensity of CO2e emissions from our operations by 25% by 2020 relative to our 2005 baseline, measured in grams of CO2e per ALB-km. 

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Ship Fuel Direct GHG Emissions

Fuel to propel the ships and run the ships generators to provide electricity.

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Shore Indirect GHG Emissions

Electricity purchased and used to power the corporate and brand headquarters buildings and the land-based hotels.

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Ship Refrigerant Direct GHG  Emissions

Refrigerants to cool appliances such as refrigerators and AC units on the ships.

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Ship Indirect GHG Emissions

Electricity purchased at the port of call for power while docked. (Cold Ironing)

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Shore Direct GHG Emissions

Fuel for company cars and building generators.