I have completed 16 ocean passages on small yachts under 100 ft, over half as skipper, most in the Pacific Ocean. I have seen soot clouds miles long on the horizon long before the ships spewing them into the atmosphere motor over the horizon. At Cop Out 21 in Paris, yet again, transport emissions were omitted from the emission control protocols:
“According to its owners, Royal Caribbean, each of the Harmony’s three four-storey high 16-cylinder Wärtsilä engines will, at full power, burn 1,377 US gallons of fuel an hour, or about 96,000 gallons a day of some of the most polluting diesel fuel in the world.”
Please do not take a cruise and especially not into the Arctic now that human hubris has melted the sea ice and opened the North West Passage. Every piece of soot lands on the ice and snow, lowering the albedo, speeding up the 6th great extinction.
The true cost of cruising is well explained here: 16 of the world’s largest ships can produce as much lung-clogging sulphur pollution as all the world’s private vehicle fleet: The Worlds largest cruise liner and it’s pollution problem.
“In international waters ship emissions remains one of the least regulated parts of our global transportation system. The fuel used in ships is waste oil, basically what is left over after the crude oil refining process. It is the same as asphalt and is so thick that when cold it can be walked upon . It’s the cheapest and most polluting fuel available and the world’s 90,000 ships chew through an astonishing 7.29 million barrels of it each day, or more than 84% of all exported oil production from Saudi Arabia, the worlds largest oil exporter.”
This Tar like fuel is kept in fuel tanks with the exhaust systems ducted through them to keep the ‘fuel’ warm and viscous so it can be pumped. Most of these large ships start their engines using diesel fuel and wait until they are over the horizon before reverting to the high sulphur bunker fuel.
Click here for more information: ‘Big polluters: one massive container ship equals 50 million cars‘.