Carnival to scrub on 70 cruiseships

Carnival Corp is expanding its programme to install scrubbers to 70 ships as it aims to meet tightening emissions regulations, chief executive Arnold Donald said today.

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The effort by the Miami cruiseship giant will represent a $400m investment for the owner of 109 cruiseships and newbuilings across 10 lines.

The exhaust gas cleaning technology will benefit both the environment and the New York-listed company, Donald said during a conference call with reporters.

"Investing in these installations will enable the Carnival Corporation to meet North American and global regulations on sulphur limits, while mitigating escalating fuel costs and helping us continue to meet our environmental and sustainability goals," he said. "It does require an incremental investment, and we are happy to make it."

He said the ECO Exhaust Gas Cleaning scrubber system is a breakthrough technology that allows the company to meet tighter restrictions in emissions control areas (ECA) despite the small amount of available space on cruiseships.

Donald also noted that expanding the programme to more ships will help bring deployment flexibility across the fleet.

In September, Carnival said it would invest $180m to install scrubber technology on 32 cruiseships.

The expanded programme will see 22 ships outfitted in the flagship Carnival Cruise Lines brand alone. Nine Holland America Line vessels will have the technology, as will seven at Princess Cruises, three at Cunard, 10 at AIDA Cruises and six at Costa Cruises.

Carnival said the scrubber programme will allow the company to redeploy vessels to homeports in the US cities of Baltimore and Norfolk, Virginia, in 2015.