What do environmentally friendly cruise ships do differently than others

Christian_Muehleck_CEO_OceanEvent_webOf the 400 cruise ships worldwide, approximately 10 percent of these are considered environmentally friendly cruise ships. OceanEvent takes a look behind the scenes. What makes these ships sustainable and what about the industry’s commitment to offer climate-neutral cruises by 2050 or better yet, earlier? Our CEO Christian Muehleck has been in the business for 20 years and is considered a connoisseur of the industry. Ask him and he says “Way before most land-based venues, single-use plastic was banned on board many cruise ships. That’s where it started. Then wastewater management systems, waste recovery and efficient recycling became more advanced than many on land.” When it comes to minimizing emissions, cruise lines are also the ones investing billions in innovative technologies. Meanwhile, little is happening in commercial shipping, which includes some 90,000 container ships, freighters and tankers.

What distinguishes environmentally friendly cruise ships?

“If we take a closer look at environmentally friendly cruise ships (by today’s standards), we quickly arrive at the factors that essentially determine CO2 fuel, wastewater treatment and ship design,” explains the cruise specialist. The industry is still at the beginning of what is sustainably feasible, and yet much has already happened. Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is gradually replacing environmentally harmful heavy fuel oil. 25 percent less carbon dioxide, no sulfur emissions and up to 95 percent less nitrogen oxides are the welcome results of this development. “However, LNG is just a stepping stone to the next generation of even more environmentally friendly fuels.” These range from synthetic LNG to biofuels to hydrogen fuel cells. Cruising is becoming more sustainable in other ways, too.

Many new ships are using hybrid propulsion, and naval architects are developing high-tech hull designs that reduce drag. This allows the ships to glide more efficiently through the waves. Ports and cruise lines are investing in shore power so ship engines can stop in port.

> Ask us about environmentally friendly cruise ships for your event!

The cruise industry has announced that it will stop emitting greenhouse gases by 2050. We will take a look at how this goal is to be achieved using very specific examples!


Hurtigruten Expeditions was a pioneer with its hybrid-powered expedition ships Roald Amundsen and Fridtjof Nansen, the first of which was launched in 2019. Now the shipping company is converting the rest of its expedition fleet to hybrid propulsion, which will reduce carbon emissions by about 20 percent. There are also plans to convert to biofuel, which is partly derived from fish waste.

Hurtigruten is also a pioneer in waste reduction. The company does not use any single-use plastic at all, and suppliers are also selected on the basis of sustainability. Some of the crew’s uniforms are made from recycled fishing nets, and the food served on board is sustainably and locally sourced. OceanEvent likes to integrate a visit to the family-run farm that supplies all the goat cheese for the Hurtigruten fleet on charter events through Norway’s Lofoten Islands.

> Hurtigruten Expedition Ship Enquiry


The largest cruise companies in the world

Carnival Corporation includes AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line and, most recently, P&O Cruises. The world’s largest cruise company has announced that it aims to achieve carbon-neutral ship operations and zero emission ships by 2050. This is to be achieved, among other things, by using more environmentally friendly fuels. State of play: currently, the associated shipping companies have a few LNG powered ships, with more to follow. There is still room for improvement here.

Disney Cruise Line and MSC Cruises are also on this path. However, the concept of clean fuel is only as good as the supply chain, and there are still too few ports where these ships can refuel. For example, P&O Cruises’ new 5,200-passenger ship “Iona” will initially call at Norway, Spain, Portugal, and the Canary Islands. So, whether a sustainable cruise can be offered currently depends not only on the shipping companies.

> Ships for 3000-6000 passengers



French cruise line Ponant’s newest expedition ship, the 245-passenger Le Commandant Charcot, is one of the most environmentally friendly ships at sea, exploring remote destinations including Antarctica using LNG and battery power. Ponant offsets 150 percent of its carbon emissions and is the first cruise line to receive the Green Marine Certificate, awarded to companies that commit to measuring and reducing their environmental impact.

The shipping company also takes sustainable tourism seriously and plans all of its routes in collaboration with local communities to avoid overloading small, remote populations. Food is sourced locally wherever possible, without depleting the resources needed for local people.

> Ponant Expedition Ship Enquiry



A-ROSA is one of the most ambitious river cruise companies when it comes to sustainable shipping. All ships in the fleet are equipped with shore power connections so that the engines are at a standstill in moorings.

Recently, the company commissioned the A-ROSA Sena, a Rhine river ship for 280 guests that runs on hybrid propulsion. With its battery-powered engine, it glides silently through nature and can connect to shore power and recharge overnight. The streamlined hull reduces drag for even more impressive fuel efficiency and high CO2 savings.

> River Cruise Event Enquiry



Luxury cruise line Silversea, known for its elegant ships and all-inclusive service, has announced “Project Evolution,” a series of ships to be launched in 2023 that will use ambitious hydrogen fuel cell technology. This will enable them to supply 100 percent of their energy while in port – a first in the cruise industry.

The ships will use three energy sources: Dual-fuel engines with LNG as the main fuel, batteries and fuel cells. The waste recycling systems are expected to be highly efficient and further reduce the volume of waste on board. The shipping company will also work with Meyer Werft in Germany to make the actual process of ship building climate neutral.

> Silversea Cruise Event Enquiry


Environmentally friendly cruise ships for your event

We should talk if you are planning an unforgettable corporate event or a private charter cruise on a cruise ship – and are looking for an environmentally friendly cruise ship! OceanEvent knows the sustainability commitment of almost all shipping companies. We implement your event on board in your sense – and make every charter cruise CO2-neutral. You can find out how this works HERE. With pleasure we prepare a unique and, in every sense, sustainable event for you!

> Your Charter Request!

Share Post

Recent Posts


It Doesn’t Get More Exclusive Than This: Cruise Incentive For Employees

In this OceanEvent logbook entry, we present our concept for a German insurance company. They wish to hold a special incentive trip during their company anniversary year for 3000 employees. It will be unlike anything the company has ever experienced before...

Climate-neutral events on cruise ships – is it possible?

In 2024 and 2025, OceanEvent may once again bear the 'Climate Neutral Company' seal, issued by Fokus-Zukunft GmbH. Our climate strategy begins in our own operational business, influences the ships and shipping companies and offsets unavoidable emissions.

Next Incentive Trip: Expedition Cruise in Antarctica

There are trips that fulfill ALL the requirements of an inspiring, unifying, sustainably effective incentive: expedition cruises to Arctic and Antarctic regions. OceanEvent creates such trips.

Unleash the Wow: Events with a Conference Center Like No Other!

For those in search of conference centers with multiple meeting rooms, event spaces, state-of-the-art stages, and accommodation capacities for all participants, OceanEvent has the most extraordinary show stages in the world on offer. Featuring conference concepts and entertainment programs for 30 to 5610 attendees.
OceanEvent climate neutral company kununu widget


OceanEvent GmbH
Seearkaden / Zweigstrasse 1
D-82319 Starnberg
TEL +49.8151.746 49-0
MAIL info@oceanevent.com


With OceanEvent you will experience events in a completely new way: onboard exclusively chartered cruise ships! Be it 30 or 6000 participants, we have the perfect floating venues for your conference, incentive, or private celebration. Our nautical experts and creative event planners implement your event in the most beautiful coastal regions of the world.

Newsletter Subscription    Ship Request

Imprint   |   Data Protection   |   Partners

    Welcome to OceanEvent – it will be our great pleasure to bring your vision of a conference, incentive or private celebration at sea to life. In order to best meet your expectations, please be so kind to share with us the following specifications:

    Desired date:Year / Month:Flexible:
    3 nights (minimum charter duration)4 – 6 nights7 nightsOther
    Mediterranean SeaNorthern EuropeCentral EuropeCaribbeanOrientAsia/Indian OceanPacificArctica / AntarcticaFlexibleOther
    Ocean voyageRiver cruiseFlexible

    IncentiveConference/MeetingJubileeBirthdayWeddingSocial EventOther
    Conference Lounge (capacity/seating)Activities on boardSpaces for a wedding ceremonyEntertainmentOther
    StandardHigh qualityLuxuriousEnergy efficientFlexible
    GoogleSocial MediaNewsletterPress articleReferralOther


    Agree: I agree that OceanEvent GmbH stores my personal data in order to inform me quarterly about interesting charter offers in the form of a newsletter. I can revoke my consent at any time by sending an e-mail to info@oceanevent.com.

      Newsletter Subscription
      Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter. Join our community for regular updates!
      Be the first to hear about new ships for exclusive charter – new destinations – new trends for your maritime event. Just what you need for your event planning – sent quarterly – sign up now!
      By filling out and submitting the newsletter subscription form, your data will be stored and used for no other purpose than receiving the OceanEvent newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the unsubscribe button in the footer of the newsletter received or by sending your request to info@oceanevent.com. Please read the privacy policy for further details.