Eight of 15 MSC Cruises ships have been fitted with exhaust gas cleaning systems, and three have shorepower plugs, with more to come, according to Bud Darr, executive vice president of maritime policy and government affairs.
“On existing ships, where feasible, we are retrofitting exhaust gas cleaning systems. We also have a plan in place to retrofit shorepower even though there is a limited amount of ports (offering shorepower),” said Darr.
Advanced wastewater treatment plants are installed on most of the fleet, and the MSC Grandiosa, set to debut next November, will have a next generation system ready to meet the latest strict Baltic standards.
Fuel savings comes from a variety of sources, said Darr. First, new classes of ships are generally more efficient. Big gains on the MSC Meraviglia came from engine and propulsion optimization, as well as HVAC.
“A lot is still to be had with the HVAC systems,” Darr explained. “We’ve got some sizable gains to be made there.”
While LED lighting may not seem like much, cumulatively, across a large ship, it makes a significant difference in energy use.
Operational gains are still driving savings, with berth-to-berth itinerary planning and speed and engine optimization cutting down fuel use.
MSC was plastic straw and stirrer free by the end of 2018, and has plans to eliminate single-use plastics by March.
Darr said that working through the company’s supply chain, virtually all single-use plastics will be gone.
Among the examples, table-side butter will now come in paper wrappers versus small plastic cups.
“The difference in the wrapper is nil, but the environmental impact is significant in large volumes,” noted Darr.
With the largest orderbook in the industry, MSC is building its five LNG-fueled ships on two separate platforms, representing an investment north of 5 billion euro.
“It’s a clear signal we think it’s the best available fuel option for us with regard to emission reductions,” said Darr.