Representatives from the Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein, the Federal State capital Kiel, Port of Kiel and the Costa Group sign the declaration (Image: Port of Kiel)
The Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein, the Federal State capital Kiel, Port of Kiel and the Costa Group have agreed to jointly promote environmentally friendly cruise tourism in the German city of Kiel.
According to a new declaration of intent signed onboard AIDA Cruises’ AIDAluna (part of the Costa Group) on 26 April, the organisations will collaborate to further develop Kiel’s maritime infrastructure, economy and tourism in an environmentally sustainable way.
“With this declaration of intent we have taken a big step towards making cruise tourism in the north both more future-proof and environmentally friendlier,” said Daniel Günther, the Minister-President of the Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein. “The Federal State intends to financially support the planned construction of the shoreside power plant on the Ostseekai and will be examining grant options.”
Initiatives will include building a new shoreside power plant by the port’s Ostseekai quay and introducing a new port charges structure that favours ships with low-emission technology.
AIDA will play a key role in helping the port and Schleswig-Holstein state to achieve its environmental aims. In 2019, AIDAprima will become the first ship to call at the Port of Kiel with LNG fuel, and both AIDAbella and AIDAluna will trial new shoreside power connections in the same year. In addition, AIDA also intends to deploy cruise ships in Kiel that are fitted with modern exhaust gas cleaning systems.
“Sustainability, regional value creation and innovation are integral to our activities,” said Michael Thamm, CEO of the Costa Group and Carnival Asia. “We are very pleased that we are able to support the Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein and the City of Kiel in making cruise tourism forward-looking and sustainable. I am firmly convinced that this kind of partnership will have a beacon effect for other ports in Germany and in Europe.”
It is hoped that the new initiatives will help to increase locals’ acceptance of Kiel’s cruise tourism, while also reducing air pollution in the port and surrounding regions.
“Ship exhaust is often also mentioned in the debate on air pollutants from diesel vehicles on Kiel's roads,” said Kiel's Mayor Ulf Kämpfer. “For cruise ships to be accepted in Kiel, it is important that other cruise companies also devote themselves more to the issues of the environment and sustainability. First LNG and soon shoreside power on the Ostseekai for AIDA ships – that is exactly the signal we want to send out for the future of the port of Kiel. And it also fits perfectly with the seaport of Kiel’s Blue Port concept that has just been drawn up.”
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