The Europa 2 – Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' modern new-build – has become the first cruise ship in the world to be awarded independent EEDI certification by Germanischer Lloyd as part of an official handover.

The positive result of the assessment is testament to the luxury vessel's energy efficiency, which was achieved by using the latest technical standards and a hydrodynamic hull.

"The Europa 2's independent certification shows that the CO2 emissions produced by Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' new ship are substantially lower than the average for the industry’s global fleet currently in service. In fact, it emits 31 per cent less CO2 than other cruise ships of a similar size," said Dr Jörg Lampe from Systems Engineering and Risk Management at Germanischer Lloyd. Hapag-Lloyd Cruises chose to have the Europa 2 assessed in line with the IMO's Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI).

The EEDI will only become compulsory for new cruise ships commissioned after 1 January 2013. These will have to meet a minimum level of efficiency defined by the IMO.

"The Europa 2 does not only set the highest, 5-star-plus standards in terms of its design, accommodation and dining facilities, its technical features are also first rate, ensuring that resources are conserved as much as possible," said Karl Pojer, Chief Executive of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises. State-of-the-art environmental technology and the associated conservation of resources played an important role during the development of the Europa 2.

For instance, the luxury vessel is also the world's first cruise ship to be fitted with an SCR catalytic converter, which reduces nitrogen oxide emissions by almost 95 percent. An optimised hull and water treatment technology which fulfils the highest industry standards also ensure that resources are used sparingly.

The Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) is calculated using a set formula and indicates a vessel's CO2 emissions. It was developed by the UN International Maritime Organization (IMO) to establish a uniform global benchmark for the energy efficiency and environmental friendliness of ships.