Carnival Corp. Releases Results of Scrubber Study

Scubber Install on AIDAblu

Carnival Corporation has released the results of an independent, two-year scientific wash-water study that shows the company’s advanced air quality systems (i.e. scrubbers) are in compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) 2020 requirements, which include regulations for cleaner air emissions and strict wash-water quality standards.

The study also concluded that the wash-water samples from scrubbers were below the limits set by several major national and international water quality and land-based water discharge standards, according to a press release. 

The two-year study included 281 wash-water samples from 53 Carnival Corporation ships equipped with the systems, creating the largest wash-water data set in the marine industry.

The samples were analyzed for 54 parameters by independent laboratories accredited by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), using standardized EPA methods, according to Carnival.

The laboratory test data was also independently reviewed, comparing the results to major point source discharge limits and water quality standards.

Specific to IMO wash-water requirements, the study confirmed results from previous studies showing the quality of the water used in the process was always far below the IMO monitoring limits for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and the annual limits for nitrates.  

“We are pleased to see the positive results of this multi-year study, which included in-depth analysis and review from respected independent experts, demonstrating the overall quality of our Advanced Air Quality Systems wash water and further confirming the IMO’s acceptance of these systems for 2020 regulatory compliance,” said Mike Kaczmarek, senior vice president for marine technology for Carnival Corporation.

“Based on extensive emissions testing, we know that our Advanced Air Quality Systems in some ways outperform marine gasoil (MGO) in providing cleaner air emissions. And although we have known for a long time that the quality of water being returned to the sea is at a high level, based on our years of development of this data set, it was important to release the findings publicly as the latest scientific evidence showing the actual water quality. This is completely consistent with the commitments we have made to our sustainability goals, and to protecting the ocean environment and the destinations we visit around the world.”

 Kaczmarek added: “Comparing scrubber wash water to both existing IMO requirements and also various other major water standards is useful to provide an informed perspective and to illustrate wash-water quality in a way that is easy to understand. These comparisons also provide relatable criteria for a number of specific parameters for Advanced Air Quality Systems, such as PAH concentrations, that are included within these standards.”

Carnival Corporation has installed scrubbers on over 70 ships in its fleet, the company said.  

Kaczmarek concluded: “We are committed to consistently exceeding the expectations of our guests for great vacations, and at the same time, we are committed to operating responsibly, as our very existence is tied to protecting the oceans, local waters and communities in which we operate. With more than 120,000 employees, most of whom live and work at sea, our commitment to protecting and maintaining healthy oceans, seas and local communities is not just an operating necessity. For us, it is simply the right thing to do, and we take great pride in our commitment to environmental leadership."

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