CLIA’s Involvement in Environmental Protection

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is the world’s largest cruise association, and one that focuses on issues related to the industry; including (but not limited to) those that involve environmental protection.  It’s member lines, which number 26, are committed to reducing the environmental impact of worldwide vessel operations on the oceans and their corresponding marine life.

These lines have implemented green initiatives to raise passenger awareness, including “behind the scenes” videos, educational partnerships in ports of call, and carefully researched and planned eco-friendly excursions. They also promote recycling and conservation efforts; many ships feature things such as recycling bins, automatic lighting and reduced onboard packaging materials.  On an even more significant level, the associated lines work to advance the implementation of advanced wastewater treatment systems, a reduction in emissions and more efficient overall ship design.

Here are some examples of notable initiatives employed by the CLIA fleet:*

  • CLIA member lines recycle over 79,000 tons of garbage in a given year including paper, plastic, aluminum cans and glass.
  • Member lines work with suppliers to reduce the amount of packaging materials coming onto the ships and require that in-cabin amenities be packaged in recyclable materials. As part of this, one of the member lines reduced the amount of waste landed ashore by 19 percent from the previous year and 47 percent from 2007 levels.
  • Members of the Fleet of 2011 are utilizing highly efficient insulation and heat reflective paint, which diminishes the need for chillers, pumps and distribution piping, allowing one new ship to be constructed with 25 percent less HVAC equipment.
  • One member line has partnered with non-profit “Clean the World” to recycle leftover toiletries, donating 388 pounds of soap and 1,203 bottles of shampoos and conditioners in 2010 for distribution to people in need.
  • One new ship’s public area is served with a clock system which is pre-programmed so that during quiet hours, the lighting automatically lowers to reduce the load and therefore reduces power demand.
  • A number of member lines use fabric bags – including laundry, dry cleaning, and shoe shine bags – in lieu of plastic bags, thereby reducing plastic from the waste stream.
  • Many lines are using ecological, non-toxic, slick hull coatings that save as much as 5% of fuel usage for propulsion.
  • Various ships are installing high-efficiency appliances onboard their ships in order to minimize their impact on the environment. Every type of appliance onboard the ships is evaluated for efficiency, including TV’s, coffee makers, ovens and dishwashers.
  • Halogen and incandescent light bulbs have either been replaced on many lines or are being replaced with LED lights, which last 25 times longer, use 80% less energy, and generate 50% less heat.
  • A number of lines have invested heavily in the use of shore-based power, allowing ship engines to be shut down while at port.
  • Many lines are in various stages of employing advanced wastewater purification systems (AWPS) that produce water cleaner than what is discharged from most municipalities.
(*Initiative information supplied by CLIA- www.cruising.org)


It should also be noted that CLIA lines meet and/or exceed environmental regulations for a ship’s voyage; an ongoing challenge, as different ports or countries many have their own specific requirements, and ships must meet them all.

Following is a list of the CLIA Member Lines…if you are planning a cruise in the near future, why not consider one of these lines, in support of their efforts on our planet’s behalf?  Click in to any of these lines to learn more about them!

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