14 September 2019

Scrubbers and many other technologies

TUI Cruises implements environmentally friendly operation of its fleet – The new Mein Schiff 2 is setting standards

Cruises and environmental protection? Are the two not mutually exclusive? “No,” emphasizes Wybcke Meier, CEO TUI Cruises. “Certainly not.” TUI Cruises focuses on modern ships featuring cutting-edge technology innovations to improve the fleet’s ecological footprint. “Minimising the impact of cruises is an integral part of our strategy,” says the CEO. This is confirmed by the newly launched newbuild Mein Schiff 2, which was recently handed over from Meyer Werft Turku to TUI Cruises at a ceremony held in Kiel. “With around 2,900 passengers and 1,100 crew, the cruise ship is like a smart little city,” explains Jan Meyer, CEO of the shipyard. “Our work consists of many small steps. In the past hundred years, shipbuilding has undergone seven fundamental changes in propulsion technology. It is thus an innovation driver, but we are delighted we have customers that actually order this technology.”

Reduction in fuel consumption

Due to the latest innovations, the new Mein Schiff 2 consumes up to 40 per cent less energy than conventional cruise ships of the same size. This is achieved through a number of features including an integrated energy management system, innovative lighting controls, a comprehensive LED concept, highly efficient air conditioning systems, a hydrodynamic hull shape and an eco-friendly underwater silicone coating of the ships. Around 19,000 control points have been fitted across the vessel to ensure that air conditioning perfectly meets actual requirements by determining exactly when and where what energy is required for cooling or heating purposes.

Reduction in emissions

Like Mein Schiff 1, delivered by Meyer Turku in 2018, Mein?Schiff?2 has scrubbers and catalytic converters to clean her exhaust gases. Scrubbers are exhaust gas purification systems. “This basically means we wash out the exhaust gases, going far beyond legal requirements,” says Wybcke Meier. In combination with the catalytic converter, the system reduces sulphur emissions by 99 per cent, nitrogen oxide emissions by 75 per cent and soot particle emissions by 60 per cent. Due to the worldwide and permanent use of these systems, the Mein Schiff newbuilds rank top in the industry’s emissions reduction league. Moreover, TUI Cruises’ itineraries are planned such that the ships do not have to operate a full speed to travel from port to port.

Promotion of resource protection

However, the concept used to ensure environmentally friendly operation of the ships is not restricted to emissions and energy efficiency but also includes waste and wastewater management. “We have a recycling rate of more than 30 per cent and, of course, separate our waste”, says Wybcke Meier. Regarding wastewater, Jan Meyer adds: “The ships also feature a technologically highly sophisticated biological wastewater treatment system so that the water that we release is cleaner than the water in the port itself.” TUI Cruises’ environmental strategy is rounded off by the topic of biodiversity. “Financial proceeds from excursions in the destinations visited by our ships are channelled into ecological projects,” says Wybcke Meier. “With today’s fleet of seven ships, considerable amounts are raised and used to actively contribute to conserving resources.”