On October 28, RCG-Royal Caribbean Group became the first major cruise shipping company to sail a USA-homeported vessel using renewable diesel fuel.
The key step in RCG's pursuit of alternative fuel comes less than a year after the unveiling of the Group's comprehensive decarbonization strategy Destination Net Zero.
The renewable fuel used by Navigator OTS contains less carbon than traditional marine fuels. While the fuel is produced from renewable raw materials, the production process makes it molecularly identical to traditional marine gas oil thus creating a "drop in" fuel that could be safely used with the existing engines of the ship.
The cruise company intends to continue using lower carbon fuel to meet part of the LA-based ship's needs as it evaluates the feasibility for long-term use, with the ambition to expand its usage to other liners across the fleet. This follows a trial by RCG's joint venture partner, Hapag-Lloyd, exploring a different process for developing sustainable biofuel.
For the trial, RCG partnered with World Fuel Services to supply renewable fuel to Navigator OTS. The Jankovich Company delivers the fuel on behalf of World Fuel Services to the liner while at the Port of LA. Once fueled, Navigator of the Seas was scheduled to set sail to Mexico.