Holland America Line Embarks On Biofuel Pilot Test To Reduce Emissions


  • Rotterdam, The Netherlands – May 2, 2024 – Holland America Line has initiated a pioneering biofuel test on its flagship vessel, Rotterdam, marking a significant step toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the cruise industry.
  • The ship will utilize 100% low carbon intensity biofuel while navigating the Norwegian World Heritage Fjords, aiming to demonstrate the viability of renewable fuels in maritime operations.

President of Holland America Line, Gus Antorcha, expressed the company’s dedication to environmental stewardship, stating, “Holland America Line is committed to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, and we are excited to demonstrate a next-generation fuel source that can help us toward our pursuit of net zero emissions.”

Biofuel Testing

The biofuel, supplied by FincoEnergies under the name GoodFuels MR1-100, is derived from organic waste or residues and certified according to the EU Renewable Energy Directive. This sustainable biofuel is expected to yield an estimated 86% reduction in life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional marine gas oil (MGO).

The initial tests will be conducted on one of the ship’s four engines during cruises throughout the month. The project has the potential to expand to multiple engines during the summer, providing valuable insights into the scalability and efficacy of biofuels in maritime applications.

Understanding Biofuels

Biofuels are sourced from feedstocks certified as 100% organic waste or residue, with no risk of land-use change or deforestation and no competition with food production. By utilizing waste fats, oils, and grease, biofuels minimize emissions during production and offer a significantly lower carbon intensity compared to conventional fuels.

Industry Collaboration and Support

Holland America Line’s partnership with FincoEnergies and the Norwegian Maritime Authority underscores the industry’s collective efforts to explore sustainable alternatives for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Johannes Schurmann, Commercial Director International Marine at FincoEnergies, emphasized the compatibility of biofuels with existing shipping practices and the importance of optimizing sustainability without compromising engine performance.

Acting Director General of Shipping and Navigation at the Norwegian Maritime Authority, Alf Tore, commended the initiative, stating, “There is a need to look at all good alternatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the future, and we see biofuels as one of the alternatives that will contribute to emission reductions.”

Forward Momentum

Holland America Line’s biofuel pilot test aligns with Carnival Corporation’s broader sustainability objectives. The company’s 2023 Sustainability Report underscores its commitment to achieving net zero emissions from ship operations by 2050, marking significant progress toward environmental goals.

As the cruise industry continues to prioritize sustainability, initiatives like the biofuel test on Rotterdam pave the way for innovative solutions to reduce carbon footprint and preserve the world’s oceans for future generations.

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Source: Holland America