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Cruise ships: greener solutions are needed

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Jan19,2024

Cruise ships: greener solutions are needed

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The St. Lawrence Cruise Association is implementing solutions to reduce the ecological footprint of cruise ships. (Archive photo)

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With the discharge of wastewater into the sea and the emission of greenhouse gases, cruise organizations want to put in place solutions to reduce the ecological footprint of this highly polluting industry. The St. Lawrence Cruise Association wishes in particular to develop electrification in certain ports in Quebec.

We don't have our heads in the sand, assures the general director of the St. Lawrence Cruise Association, René Trépanier.

His organization puts the protection of the St. Lawrence River at the heart of its priorities, he maintains.

In our future plans, we would like all ports on the St. Lawrence to be able to offer electrical connection at the dock.

A quote from René Trépanier, general director of the St. Lawrence Cruise Association

For the moment, in Quebec, only the port of Montreal is electrified, and has been for seven years. The port of Quebec will thus be the next to make the move.

This is where we have the largest volume. We must offer this service in places where it can have the most impact. For the ports of the North Shore, the volume is not yet large enough, says Mr. Trépanier.

For its part, the Baie-Comeau port team is working on a new sustainable development plan.

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The director of business development and cruises at the port of Baie-Comeau, Elizabeth Moreau, welcomes this electrification project.

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The cruise industry has a lot of work to do to reduce its footprint ecological.

For us, it was a solution that was still quite realistic and achievable, she mentions.

The steps have been taken, but the work is in its very early stages.

This is not something that will happen tomorrow morning, it will still take a few years to put in place. We are in the exploratory phase, specifies Ms. Moreau.

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Cruises helped introduce 11,700 tourists to Sept-Îles this summer, according to Destination Sept-Îles Nakauinanu. (Archive photo)

To carry out this expensive project, René Trépanier suggests that financial support from the federal and provincial governments will be necessary.

The electrification of docks will prevent liners from consuming heavy fuel oil when docked, because the quantities of greenhouse gases generated are exponential.

In order to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, several ships are installing systems to eliminate the sulfur released in the air. atmosphere by fuels.

The wastewater generated by these purifiers, untreated, is then discharged. This practice, prohibited in the United States, is legal on the North Shore as elsewhere in Canada, with a few exceptions: notably Vancouver and Montreal.

A previous version of this article stated that only the Port of Vancouver prohibits ships from discharging wastewater generated by sulfur removal systems. After checking, other ports prohibit it.

It is one of the largest sources of marine pollution.

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Author of a master's thesis in environment and geography at the x27;University of Montreal, Antoine Kingsbury explains that the impacts are not limited to wastewater spills.

There is also no shortage of examples to illustrate the problem.

The unloading of garbage into the sea, the #x27;emission of noises in the water which are too high, collisions of ships with certain marine mammals, light which can have an impact on migration and egg laying for certain species…, lists -he.

After the reduction in greenhouse gases, the industry will therefore have a lot of work to do to reduce its ecological footprint.

However, as Antoine Kingsbury points out: If we look back 20 years ago, a lot of stuff was done, let's hope that continues in the right direction.

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Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my natasha@thetimeshub.in 1-800-268-7116

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