MSC has pledged to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions across both of its cruise brands – MSC Cruises and Explora Journeys – by 2050.
The company said it is “on a race to help accelerate the necessary technological and fuel developments required” and that it had made annual efficiency improvements of 2-4% across its fleet since 2008.
The International Maritime Organisation’s ambition is to reduce emissions from shipping by 50% by 2050.
MSC has partnered with shipbuilder Fincantieri and energy infrastructure company, Snam, to determine the conditions for the design and construction of an oceangoing hybrid hydrogen/LNG-powered cruise ship.
It has also ordered three ships that will operate using liquefied-natural gas (LNG), that creates up to 21% less greenhouse gas emissions.
Partnering with industry leaders and academics, the company has started a research project to promote low-carbon shipping by combining “progressing energy technologies and innovative ship design”.
Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman of the Cruise Division of MSC Group, called on the maritime industry to collectively “work relentlessly” to reduce emissions and “bring about the next great energy transition in our industry”.
He said: “Today we are taking our commitment one step further by embracing a net-zero emissions future within the next three decades.
“We will achieve this by investing in and otherwise supporting the accelerated development and implementation of innovative, cutting-edge technologies to be deployed across our fleet.
“Collaboration between operators, shipyards, technology manufacturers, academic institutions, public authorities and governments will be essential. There are already encouraging signs of such partnerships enabling progress, but more can and must be done.”
MSC has signed Getting to Zero Coalition’s Call to Action to accelerate the decarbonisation of the overall shipping sector, including cruising.
The call to action includes: setting a target for zero-emission shipping by 2050; deploying commercially viable zero-emission vessels by 2030; and joint action by the private and public sectors.