Construction has begun on the first of seven liquefied natural gas (LNG) powered cruise ships to be operated by Carnival at Meyer Werft's shipyard in Germany.
The fully LNG-powered vessel will be known as AIDAnova and is scheduled to join Carnival’s AIDA Cruises brand by late next year.
The 120t cruise ship is set to feature a width of 5m, a height of 8.2m and a length of 21m.
AIDAnova and its sister ships will be able to use LNG to generate all of their power, both in port and on the open sea.
The use of LNG is expected to reduce exhaust emissions to help protect the environment and support Carnival’s sustainability goals.
Carnival’s new LNG-fuelled ships are scheduled to be delivered between 2018 and 2022, and will be built by both Meyer Werft and Finnish shipbuilder Meyer Turku.
Carnival president and CEO Arnold Donald said: “Today marked a significant milestone in the construction of this next-generation of Carnival ships featuring our 'green cruising' design, which will be the most environmentally friendly ships in our company's history.
“We are committed to continuing to reduce air emissions and improving air quality by evaluating both new and established solutions, including LNG.”
Carnival plans to debut a new LNG-powered ship under its Costa Cruises brand in 2019, following the launch of AIDAnova next year.
Construction of the ship is expected to begin at the Meyer Turku shipyard over the next few weeks.
Two Carnival brands, Carnival Cruise Line and P&O Cruises (UK), are also due to receive LNG-powered ships by 2020.
Image: Carnival marked the official beginning of construction for its first next-generation cruise ship. Photo: courtesy of PRNewsfoto / Carnival Corporation & plc.