Oceans are 71% of the planet and 100% critical to our business.
Conserving their health is paramount.

Seastainability at The Group

Cruise ships are cleaner than ever before. They are improving with each new class of ships. From energy consumption reduction and emissions purification to waste management and plastics reduction, we are committed to a continuous pursuit of progress.

Rooted in a Decades-long Commitment to the Oceans

Save the Waves is the foundation of our environmental initiatives. It began in 1992 and evolved from a recycling program to a company-wide philosophy.

The program, and its subsequent goals, is integrated into our daily onboard operations, meets our above and beyond compliance principles and provides us with a structure to maintain our commitment to continuous improvement. It also provides the umbrella under which each officer, staff and crewmember signs a pledge to uphold his or her responsibilities to protect the environment.

A Journey to Zero Waste

Whenever possible, the waste on our ships is reused, recycled or converted into energy.

Reduce: We work with our suppliers to green our supply chain, reduce packaging materials and use more sustainable resources.

Reuse: We participate in container return programs with our vendors and have established a standard donation database for our fleet. Items include mattresses, sheets, towels, furniture and clothing.

Recycle: All trash on board our ships is hand-sorted by our crewmembers to determine what can be recycled.

Driving Change for a Plastics Free Ocean

We have taken action to reduce single-use plastics across our fleet and in two years reduced our consumption by 60%.

Hydrothermal Oxidation Technology

We installed a prototype for waste treatment — Hydrothermal Oxidation Technology on Celebrity Apex. This innovative waste treatment method increases energy efficiency and ensures our food waste is treated without discharge to sea.

  • Although less overall volume was landed in 2020, the APCD metric is impacted by much fewer passengers during 2020 as well as an inability to land in our “green hub” ports.
  • The average person in the U.S. generates about 4.4 pounds of solid waste per day with 2.9 pounds of the generated waste sent to a landfill (2013 EPA MSW Data)

Conserving Every Drop of Water

Fresh water on a ship is a precious commodity, and we go to great efforts to ensure it's used efficiently. On board, fresh water is used for drinking, showers, sinks, toilets, galleys, pools and spas and is obtained primarily via reverse osmosis or desalination.

Leading the Way in Change

Going above and beyond compliance is critical for the success of our business and our planet. At Royal Caribbean, we are leading the way in change in the cruise industry and holding ourselves to a higher standard.

Partnering with
World Wildlife Fund

In 2020 Royal Caribbean Group and World Wildlife Fund (WWF) marked the conclusion of five year environmental targets to ensure the long-term health of the oceans. With WWF’s help we set and achieved ambitious 2020 targets to reduce our emissions, improve our sourcing and support sustainable destinations.

Our sustainable sourcing targets, including sustainable seafood and plastics reduction were impacted due to our suspension of service during the COVID-19 health pandemic, but will resume as our ships return to service.

Sustainable Ocean Economy

We believe in partnering for change. Through collaboration with the United Nation's High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy we were part of the Advisory Network who advised on the new ocean action agenda.

High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy

A First for Galápagos

Celebrity Flora was purpose-built for its new home in the Galápagos — making it one of the most environmentally-friendly ships in the region and the only cruise ship in the Galápagos to feature dynamic positioning, a system that uses sensors and gyrocompasses to maintain its position. The ship also is equipped with Oceanscope, a series of oceanographic and atmospheric instruments mapping the unique ocean currents surrounding the island chain.

Focused on Sustainable Tourism

Over 2,000 tours are now offered across the RCG fleet, far surpassing its initial goal of 1,000 by 2020. Certified to the Global Sustainable Tourism (GSTC) standard, these tours are not just a win for RCG but they boost the global supply of certified sustainable excursions for the industry.

Design and Innovation

We design to build the most efficient ships possible. We look 30 years into the future but also at how we can improve our existing fleet of ships.

Energy and Emissions Reductions Through Design Innovation

In 2020 we introduced a new target to reduce our emission an additional 25% by 2025 after achieving our 35% reduction from a 2005 baseline.

In 2018 we achieved our 35% emissions reduction target ahead of schedule. Then from 2019-2020 our emissions intensity increased due to changes in our organizational structure, full year of the Silversea Cruises acquisition, the addition of 12 ships, as well as our suspension of operations due to COVID-19.

Reducing Emissions

To date, 70% of RCG vessels are equipped with Advanced Emissions Purification (AEP) systems. These systems remove 98% of sulfur dioxide from our emissions and help us meet the requirements set forth by the IMO for 2020. Our remaining vessels have completed all fuel modifications and are ready to run on compliant fuel.

Exploring Alternatives

Exploring alternative fuel solutions is a major priority for us and our industry. Our teams are constantly exploring decarbonization solutions while also continuing to increase our energy efficiency.

Designing for Improved Hull Performance

Celebrity Cruises’ Edge Class features a parabolic ultra bow that is not just eye-catching, but it contributes to overall energy reduction. With each new class of ships, our teams aim for a 20% energy reduction. This is a combination of new innovations and design calibrations, such as the hull. In the case of Edge Class, the bow is straight, not in a curve. Advanced modeling showed improved performance and efficiency by borrowing from well-established designs found in decades of maritime history.

Data Crunching

We’re digitally transforming ourselves and artificial intelligence is a key player in that transformation. With a voracious appetite AI gets smarter with each data point it takes in. And as it gets smarter, the more efficient our ships become. AI has become integral in optimally routing our ships for weather safety, fuel efficiency and guest comfort. On our newest ships, it can even keep track of how much energy a single oven is using in the ship's galley.

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