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Editor in chief: Angelo Scorza
11/09/17 08:42

Cruises attacked by environmental groups

According to NABU and Cittadini per l'Aria, pollution from the cruiseship industry is still massive

According to NABU, German renowned environmental Association, despite multiple claims regarding the construction of new green ships, cruise companies made no big progress in the abatement of air pollution.

NABU, issued 2017 cruise ships ranking, published in Italy by Cittadini per l’Aria.

Only Hapag Lloyd and Tui Cruises produced acceptable results, due to the installation of nitrogen oxide catalysts on board, however, according to both Associations, leading players Costa, MSC and Royal Caribbean, show very little to prove they really care for the environment or the health of people living in port cities, working or going on holiday on these ships.

“The lack of action from Costa, MSC and Royal Caribbean to upgrade environmental protection endangers their customers, port residents and the global climate. We are particularly disappointed by the green-washing carried out by Aida Cruises. They failed to keep their promise to invest in particulate filters for their fleet”, stated Leif Miller, NABU CEO, supported by Dietmar Oeliger, head of NABU's transport policy.

Last year the cruise industry announced that 23 ships were about to install black carbon filters on board, while, for the time being, no single filter is working.

Besides the technical claims, NABU and Cittadini per l'Aria also states that: “None of the cruise companies responded to the Quality test they supplied, aimed at assessing environmental progress in this sector, while CLIA, international Cruise Association, commented they seriously consider this subject”, illustrated Anna Gerometta, President of the Italian Association, providing data about Health diseases in people living in port cities.

“Civitavecchia showed 51% death risk increase due to neurological diseases and 31% growth in lung diseases in people living 500 metres close to port area”.

As stated by the two associations “a mid-size cruise ship burns as much as 150 tons fuel/day, producing as much particulate as one million cars.

Emissions from diesel engines as the ones installed on cruise ships are qualified carcinogenic by World Health Organisation. These emissions cause several lung or cardiovascular diseases”.

For these reasons Cittadini per l’Aria asks for a general ban on heavy fuel oil, cleaner fuels and new regulations which demand the installation of particulate filters and SCR catalysts on all ships.

They wrote Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni asking him to establish an ECA zone in the Mediterranean.