Carnival Corp member, Costa Group, which includes Costa Cruises and AIDA Cruises, has created a dedicated de-carbonisation department within its Hamburg-based Carnival Maritime unit.
This recently established department, which brings the Group’s scientific and technical expertise under one roof, will be responsible for developing and implementing the strategy for achieving the de-carbonisation ambitions of the Costa and AIDA fleets, by 2050.
This initiative will have a strong focus on research and development, energy management and data analytics to develop a roadmap that will lead to zero emission ship operations, the Group said.
As a priority, the new department will work to further improve the environmental performance of the existing fleet, working in synergy with the sustainability departments of the Costa and AIDA brands.
Specifically, the unit will be studying and testing new technologies, such as batteries, fuel cells, solar and wind power, to accelerate their availability. In addition, exhaust gas cleaning systems are currently being developed with partners to allow lower emission levels.
Over time, developments in the application of alternative fuels on a large scale, including biofuels (liquefied biogas and biodiesel), methanol, ammonia and hydrogen fuels, will allow the ships to be flexible on the use of low carbon energy.
Solutions are being designed to meet requirements for newbuildings, as well as for the current fleet, for the capability to store and use new generation fuels.
“Addressing climate change requires a great effort and commitment, and we believe that the creation of our new dedicated task force is a key asset to accelerate the development of new concepts that can lead us to reach carbon neutral operations by 2050,” said Michael Thamm, Group CEO, Costa Group and Carnival Asia (pictured).
“To meet this challenge, we intend to build collaborations and partnerships with other players in the value chain to continue our pioneering role within the cruise industry. We will also continue to work in close co-operation with governments to make sure that Europe can lead the way to sustainable cruising,” he said.
Costa Group was the first to introduce LNG propulsion – the most advanced fuel technology available to reduce emissions – with four ships already in service in its fleet. Moreover, the majority of the ships are equipped with shore power capabilities to be zero emission in ports, where this technology is available.
Costa is also ready to install the biggest lithium-ion battery storage system on the cruise ship ‘AIDAprima’ by the summer. In addition, fuel cells powered by hydrogen derived from methanol are being currently installed on the ‘AIDAnova’ to run the first tests this summer.
With Ecospray, an Italian-based company of which Costa is a shareholder, the Group is also working on carbon capture experimental projects.