Ports lagging behind cruise lines with ‘plug in’ shore power capability

Ports are lagging behind cruise lines in providing the capability for ships to ‘plug in’ to shore power when docked to cut emissions.

Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest cruise company, claims to lead the industry with 67% of its global fleet – 64 ships – shore power-capable.

This means it has twice as many ships able to ‘plug in’ than there are ports equipped to provide shore power, with the company surpassing its 2030 shore power goal seven years ahead of schedule in 2023.

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An additional three ships will be fitted with shore power capabilities this year.

An agreement with Swiss technology company ABB Group will help install an additional 30 shore power connections onboard Carnival Corporation ships over the next few years.

The disclosure came as PortMiami became the first major cruise port on the US eastern seaboard offering shore power connections at five cruise berths.

Carnival Cruise Line ship Carnival Conquest will be the first cruise ship to plug into landside electrical power at the Florida cruise hub, with energy from the local electric grid used to power onboard systems and equipment as engines are turned off.

Carnival Corporation chief executive Josh Weinstein said: “Using shoreside electricity to power our ships in port is an integral part of our global strategy to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and minimise our environmental footprint. 

“It’s been over 20 years since our company first pioneered shore power for the cruise industry, yet adoption remains limited to just 2% of cruise ports worldwide. 

“We applaud PortMiami for having the vision to recognise shore power as vital to the future of our industry and the planet, and for being at the forefront of their peer group in delivering this capability to cruise ships.”

Carnival Cruise Line president Christine Duffy added: “We continue to implement important initiatives that have kept us ahead of our ambitious goals to reduce emissions, and this new shore power capability will allow our ships to rely on the electrical grid to power our ships while in port.”

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