Steel-cutting ceremony for Costa Cruises’s second LNG-powered ship
The first steel was cut at the Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland for the Costa Toscana, a future addition to the fleet of Costa Cruises, the Italian brand of Carnival Corporation & plc. The Costa Toscana is the second of the two new sister ships ordered by Costa Cruises and powered both in port and at sea by LNG. The first, the Costa Smeralda, is nearing completion with the finishing touches being put to the interior fit-out at the same yard in Turku prior to her entry into service in October this year. Meanwhile the Costa Toscana is expected to be delivered in 2021.
The introduction of LNG fueling is a ground-breaking innovation that will minimize environmental impact. It will mean improved air quality with the virtual total elimination of sulfur dioxide emissions (zero emissions) and particulate matter (95-100% reduction). The use of LNG will also greatly lessen emissions of nitrogen oxides (85% direct reduction) and CO2 (reduction of up to 20%). The gas will be stored in special tanks on board and will be used to generate the energy required for navigation and onboard services, thanks to dual fuel hybrid engines.
With gross tonnage of over 180,000 and more than 2,600 staterooms on each, Costa Smeralda and Costa Toscana are an integral part of the strategic plan for carbon footprint reduction, defined by Carnival Corporation and fully implemented by Costa Cruises. In fact, the measures adopted by virtue of a dedicated investment plan enabled Carnival Corporation to meet its 25% carbon reduction goal for 2020 some three years ahead of schedule, with a 27.6% decrease in emissions from operations already achieved by 2018.
“The steel-cutting ceremony for Costa Toscana is another step forward in our sustainable development plan. LNG propulsion for cruise ships is a major innovation, pioneering a new era in the use of low-carbon fuels that will significantly reduce exhaust emissions to help protect the environment without compromising on safety, in line with our top priorities. Once again, Costa Cruises is paving the way for the industry as a whole: in accordance with our global vision aimed at sustainable development, we were the first to invest in this technology, which is now really starting to take hold. However, a lot remains to be done in terms of the ready availability of gas bunkering infrastructure to ensure the seamless transition to LNG,” said Costa Cruises President Neil Palomba.