HAL-Holland America achieves fleetwide shore power installation

   September 28, 2023 ,   Cruise Industry

HAL-Holland America Line has achieved a significant sustainability milestone with the completion of shore power installation on its entire fleet. MS Volendam marked the final vessel to become shore power-capable, having completed its installation in Vancouver BC Canada, and successfully connected to the port's shoreside-provided electricity on September 27th.

The cruise line's journey toward shore power connectivity began in 2006 with the conversion of its four Vista Class ships. Subsequently, HAL's newest ships/of the Pinnacle Class (Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam) have built-in shore power systems. HAL's Signature Class ships (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam) were launched with partial installations, which have since been completed.

As part of its sustainability initiatives, HAL employs shore power, also known as cold ironing, to reduce emissions and noise pollution while in port. Shore power involves connecting the ship to a dockside power source, allowing the vessel to operate all onboard electrical equipment without using its engines. The cruise line can connect to shore power in over 18 ports globally, with more than 25 additional ports actively working on constructing shore power facilities or exploring the option.

Gus Antorcha (HAL's President) emphasized the cruise line's commitment to sustainability, stating:

"At Holland America Line, our legacy of exceptional onboard care extends to caring for the planet, and having our entire fleet capable of shore power connection is a tremendous milestone in our sustainability efforts. We have committed to reducing our carbon emission intensity by 20% by 2030 from our 2019 baseline, and we're on our way to reaching that goal through a variety of initiatives that include shore power. We look forward to more global ports embracing shore power capability in the future and are ready to work with them to connect."

Ports with shore power facilities visited by HAL ships include Juneau Alaska; NYC New York, California's San Francisco and San Diego, Seattle Washington, Canada's Halifax NS, Montreal QC, Vancouver BC, Norway's Bergen, Alesund and Kristiansand, Kiel Germany, and China's Shanghai and Xiamen. In 2024, the port of Rotterdam is expected to be shore-power ready, allowing Holland America Line vessels to connect in another major port.

In addition to shore power, HAL demonstrates its commitment to responsible environmental practices through a comprehensive fleetwide program focused on waste reduction and recycling, compliance with international environmental guidelines, and lower-emission propulsion technology.

To minimize food loss and waste, the company has installed biodigesters that use oxygen, water, and microorganisms to break down uneaten food, which is then sustainably released into the environment. This process helps reduce methane and carbon dioxide emissions associated with natural food decomposition in the ocean. Food waste dehydrators, another method of food waste processing, are being fleet-wide by the end of 2023 to reduce the overall volume of organic waste.

The company has also taken steps to eliminate non-essential single-use items and single-use plastics on board. Recyclable glass and aluminum containers are used for water and soda, while plastic straws have been replaced with biodegradable alternatives, and plastic hot- and cold-beverage cups have been substituted with plant- or paper-based options. These measures align with the cruise line's commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship.