Carnival’s wholly-owned subsidiary AIDA Cruises has started using biofuels as part of its efforts to cut down CO₂ emissions.

The move forms part of the company’s Green Cruising Strategy.

AIDAprima is the company’s first larger-scale cruise ship to be bunkered with marine biofuel. The biofuel blend is produced using 100% sustainable raw materials, such as waste cooking oil, and marine gas oil (MGO).

The bunkering was completed during the vessel’s stopover in the port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Dutch biofuel pioneer GoodFuels is the cooperation partner in the project.

At present, AIDAprima cruises between Norway and Hamburg on seven-day voyages to the metropolises of Western Europe.

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The project also includes the commissioning of the battery storage system on board AIDAprima, which has a capacity of 10MW hours, and the installation of a fuel cell on board the AIDAnova vessel.

Furthermore, future plans will see AIDAprima expand and increase the use of shore power while in port.

AIDA Cruises president Felix Eichhorn said: “We continue to actively explore all opportunities to decarbonise our fleet while advancing efficiency in line with international carbon intensity reduction targets.

“With the successful start of biofuel usage, we have proven that gradual decarbonisation is possible even on ships already in service.”

The firm previously trialled the use of regenerated biofuels in marine diesel engines in collaboration with research partners at the University of Rostock.

It is also working with partners from research, science and industry on the development of advanced solutions and technologies to facilitate carbon-neutral ship operations.

In 2019, AIDA Cruises announced the testing of a fuel cell system to support green cruising.