NCLH Improves Water Production Rates, Maps Water-Stressed Ports

Norwegian Viva's Bow

According to its 2023 “Sail & Sustain” Report, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) is improving its onboard water production rates across the Norwegian, Oceania and Regent brands.

In 2023, the company consumed approximately 7.6 million cubic meters of fresh water for all onboard ship operations.

The company said that nearly 6.8 million cubic meters, or 89 percent of the total freshwater consumption, was produced onboard.

The remaining 11 percent consists of bunkered water, which is potable water acquired in port for use onboard.

Onboard water production grew through the use of evaporators and reverse osmosis plants that utilize seawater as the source, the company added, noting that the increase reduces the need to bunker fresh water.

“This is particularly important in countries where fresh water is limited and best reserved for local populations. Our target is to reduce bunkering by 4 percent by 2025, compared with 2019,” NCLH added.

Most of the water was produced using the reverse osmosis process, which involves high-pressure pumps, water filters, and treatment components to convert saltwater into freshwater.

To produce freshwater from seawater, the company also used steam evaporators, which utilize heat sources such as exhaust gas boilers, oil-fired boilers, or wasted heat recovered from the main engine high-temperature cooling system.

In 2023, the company’s water stewardship initiative included a Water Risk Assessment (WRA) that helped identify and assess ports that are considered water-stressed.

Water stress refers to the ability, or lack thereof, to meet human and ecological demand for fresh water, NCLH said.

Less than 3 percent of the company’s total water consumption was embarked in ports that were considered water stressed.

According to the “Sail & Sustain” report, Norwegian is also working on water conservation initiatives, including a pilot program that was implemented onboard the Norwegian Jade.

The plan is to track and monitor water consumption in high-use areas and allow for remote monitoring, the company explained.

Cruise Industry News Email Alerts

Cruise Industry News Email Alerts



Get the latest breaking cruise newsSign up.


62 Ships | 142,732 Berths | $46.7 Billion | View

New 2024 Drydock REPORT


  • Mkt. Overview
  • Record Year
  • Refit Schedule
  • 120 Pages
  • PDF Download
  • Order Today
New 2024 Annual Report


  • 2033 Industry Outlook 
  • All Operators
  • Easy to Use
  • Instant Access
  • Order Today