In 2019, we launched the second LNG cruise ship in our fleet - and in the world - powered by LNG both at sea and in port.
The introduction of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to power cruise ships is a major development that supports Carnival Corporation’s decarbonization pathway. In the cruise industry, we have pioneered the use of LNG, and we are continuing to expand our investments in LNG as the marine industry’s most advanced fuel technology to date.
We began the implementation of our LNG vision by using LNG in port. In 2015, AIDA Cruises’ AIDAsol made history as the first cruise ship in the world to be supplied with power by an LNG hybrid barge while in port in Hamburg, Germany. Through a unique pilot project with Becker Marine Systems, the barge was designed, constructed and commissioned in three years. Since then, we have expanded our LNG capabilities to supply LNG directly to AIDAprima and AIDAperla, each with dual-fuel powered engines. The two ships can be powered by LNG while in select ports, drawing fuel directly from trucks alongside the ship.
In 2018, we made history with the launch of AIDAnova, the first cruise ship in the world that can be powered by LNG both at sea and in port. Most recently in 2019, we launched the second LNG-powered cruise ship for our global fleet, Costa Smeralda. We are leading the cruise industry’s use of LNG to power cruise ships and have nine additional next-generation LNG-powered vessels due for delivery between 2020 and 2025 for our Costa Cruises, AIDA Cruises, P&O Cruises UK, Carnival Cruise Line and Princess Cruises brands.
Costa Smeralda was built at the Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland and delivered to our Costa Cruises brand in December 2019. Barcelona was the first port to welcome the new ship after the shipyard departure. During the first refueling operation, which was made possible through our partnership with Shell, the Coral Methane tanker ship filled Costa Smeralda’s three tanks with approximately 3,200 cubic meters of LNG. Two of these tanks have a capacity of 1,525 cubic meters, while the third tank has a capacity of approximately 520 cubic meters. With one complete LNG tank filling, which occurs while the ship is in Barcelona, Costa Smeralda can be powered for at least two weeks.
In 2017, we expanded our partnership with Shell to fuel North America’s first next-generation LNG powered cruise ships – the first of which, Carnival Cruise Line’s Mardi Gras, is scheduled to arrive in 2020. As part of the agreement, the two ships, built with our next-generation “green cruising” ship design, will be fueled through Shell’s Partner Quality LNG transport (Q-LNG) Bunker Barge (LBB) – a project that is part of Shell’s strategic plan to develop a global LNG bunkering network. The oceangoing LBB, which is designed to support growing cruise line demand for LNG as a marine fuel, will be the first of its kind in the U.S. and will allow these ships to refuel with LNG at ports along the southeastern U.S. coast.
We are working with Shell as they are making the necessary Bio-LNG investments to scale the technology and build a reliable infrastructure. Bio-LNG, or liquefied Biomethane, is a biofuel made by processing organic waste flows. Biogas develops when anaerobic digestion occurs, biological matter breaks down and gas is emitted in the process. Bio-LNG is practically CO2 neutral and has all the advantages of LNG, including reduced CO2 emissions, lower engine sound, lower NOx and significantly less particulate matter emissions.
We are proud to be on the forefront of
advancing LNG as a fuel source for the
cruise industry – an innovation that supports
our sustainability goals and significantly
improves overall air emissions. One of the
keys to establishing LNG as a standard for
powering cruise ships is building out an
extensive, safe and reliable infrastructure
across the globe for this advanced fuel
technology. We are looking forward to
working closely with Shell as they help to
bring LNG to North America in what we
hope will be the first step in building a strong
foundation for the future of LNG fuel supply
for cruise ships in the region.
Looking ahead to 2025, we have nine additional next-generation ships on order. The first of these will be the Iona for our P&O Cruises UK brand. The ship is being built in Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany and is scheduled to be delivered in the 2020. Iona will be the first LNG ship for P&O UK and the third within the Carnival Corporation & plc global fleet. Iona will also debut as the largest cruise ship ever built exclusively for the British cruise holiday market. The company’s second LNG ship scheduled for delivery in late 2020 is the Carnival Mardi Gras. Named after its very first ship TSS Mardi Gras, which launched in 1971, the new Carnival Cruise Line ship will be the brand’s first ship powered by LNG. Mardi Gras will also be the first LNG-powered cruise ship in North America. The ship is scheduled to operate from Port Canaveral, FL. To support LNG as an alternative fuel, Port Canaveral is investing in infrastructure and will soon welcome a new LNG bunkering barge, the Q-LNG 4000, which will refuel the Mardi Gras as part of our partnership with Shell. In 2021, the second LNG-powered ships for Costa Cruises and AIDA Cruises are scheduled to be delivered. P&O UK’s second LNG ship is scheduled for delivery in 2022 as well as the second ship for Carnival Cruise Line. Our AIDA Cruises brand has one additional LNG ship on order, expected to be delivered in 2023. In addition, our Princess Cruises brand also has two LNG ships on order with expected delivery dates in 2023 and 2025.