Carnival inches close to its 2030 emission reduction targets

The world’s largest cruise company Carnival Corporation & plc is on track to achieve an overall 18% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emission intensity on a lower berth capacity basis in 2024 compared to 2019.

Courtesy of Carnival Corp

The achievement is just a few points shy of its 20% reduction goal originally targeted for 2030, Carnival said.

By year-end, the cruise major expects to have reduced its GHG emission intensity by 42% on a lower berth capacity basis since its first benchmark in 2008. The company also expects this performance to put it ahead of the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) 2030 carbon intensity reduction timeline.

Overall, the company aims to have net zero emissions from ship operations by 2050.

Carnival announced last year its decision to accelerate its stated 2030 GHG intensity reduction goal by four years, committing to at least a 20% cut on a lower berth capacity basis by 2026.

The achievement was attributed to aggressive actions to be more energy efficient, reduce overall fuel use, and operate using emission-reducing technologies and lower-emission fuels.

As a result, Carnival Corporation revealed that it is producing 10+% less total GHG emissions today than its peak historical year (2011), despite increasing capacity by roughly 30% since that time.

Carnival said that using less fuel is the fastest way to reduce GHG emissions and make a tangible impact. As such, fuel-saving solutions have been identified as instrumental in achieving fuel reductions, such as optimized hull designs, special coatings to minimize drag for greater fuel efficiency, as well as developing more energy-efficient itineraries, fine-tuning hydrodynamics, and using ocean currents and techniques such as weather routing and speed reduction where possible.

In addition, over 60% of the company’s ships are equipped to use shoreside electricity while docked in port to reduce emissions and noise in port.

Furthermore, Carnival has also installed air lubrication systems to help ships glide on a cushion of air bubbles with less friction, reducing fuel use for propulsion by up to 5%.

On the alternative fuels front, Carnival has given a strong voice of confidence to LNG and has nine LNG-capable ships in service and two more on order.

Investing in LNG has reduced direct carbon emissions by up to 20%, almost eliminating sulfur dioxides and significantly reducing emissions of nitrogen oxides and particulate matter, the company pointed out.

The cruise major is also trialing advanced fuel technologies, including a first-of-its-kind lithium-ion battery storage system, testing fuel cells powered by hydrogen derived from methanol, and trialing biofuels.