Aurora Expeditions has announced its certification as 100-percent carbon neutral as part of its long-term sustainability strategy. According to a press release, this certification was achieved in partnership with South Pole – an emission reductions project developer and global climate action expert.
“For more than 30 years, Aurora Expeditions has been deeply committed to responsible and respectful travel,” said Aurora Expeditions’ CEO, Monique Ponfoort. “(W)e are always seeking ways to innovate, educate and create a positive impact for our planet, and we will continue our active sustained efforts to help preserve the beauty and majesty that Mother Nature possesses.”
According to the press release, the South Pole Climate Neutral Company certification has been achieved by a combination of sustainability initiatives across the company’s business operations. In a three-step plan in partnership with South Pole, Aurora Expeditions calculates all greenhouse gas emissions across its business operations annually.
The cruise line said that it then compensates for these emissions by purchasing carbon credits from climate action projects that meet “the highest international standards” and sets must-reach goals, targets and timelines in line with its emission reduction and sustainability programs.
Aurora Expeditions said that it has chosen to support two climate action projects: InfraVest Tongyuan Wind Farm, a renewable energy project in northwest Taiwan harnessing wind power, and a biodiversity conservation project in Australia – Mount Sandy Conservation on South Australia’s Limestone Coast.
The latter, according to Aurora, promotes conservation partnerships between the traditional Ngarrindjeri landowners and non-Indigenous Australians through “vital conservation work.”
“The program ensures permanent protection of a regionally and culturally important pocket of biodiversity-rich land. Birds, animals, and plants flourish undisturbed, while native plants for revegetation are supplied by the local nursery at Raukkan Aboriginal Community, a self-governed Indigenous community 50 kilometers northwest of the project site. Raukkan community members are also employed for onsite works, including vegetation monitoring, fencing, and pest and weed control,” Aurora explained.
Ponfoort said that carbon neutrality is just one of the actions Aurora is taking. Areas, where Aurora Expeditions wants to create a positive impact, include:
• Continuing to build “guest and staff legacy for the benefit of the planet”
• Deepening its connection and understanding of the places that it explores
• Enriching the guest experience through onboard lectures and participative Citizen Science programs
• Creating a new sustainable food program
• Championing women in conservation
Aurora reminded that on its newest ship, the Sylvia Earle, the decks are all named and themed after seven female global ocean conservationists. Each deck features a curated gallery experience honoring these women and their crucial global environmental causes.
“Our ships are roving ambassadors for the planet, and we hope that our guests will also become ambassadors for the planet,” the cruise line wrote.
“We plan to accelerate meaningful changes in our active care programs that will make a lasting difference for our people, our expeditions and importantly the future of our planet,” noted Ponfoort.