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NCLH completes $200m scrubbers initiative ahead of schedule

Installations on Norwegian Getaway, here, and Norwegian Breakaway completed NCLH's scrubbers initiative
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings completed its nearly $200m multi-year investment in exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers) on certain ships across its fleet.

The devices significantly reduce emissions, including up to 98% of sulfur oxides as well as particulate matter.

'We are pleased to announce that our ambitious multi-year investment to install exhaust gas cleaning systems on our ships has concluded with the successful completion of EGCS retrofits on the Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway,' NCLH President and CEO Frank Del Rio said. 'We took the opportunity during the COVID-19 pandemic-related voyage suspension to accelerate installations on existing ships and complete this project nearly two years ahead of schedule.'

Thirteen NCL ships, 12 hybrid systems

The installations were on 13 Norwegian Cruise Line ships which represent approximately 70% of operational capacity. All but one has a hybrid system which can operate in closed or open loop.

Giovanni Canu, VP special projects and operational support, noted NCLH's first scrubber retrofit took place in early 2014. He acknowledged the support of the internal team and numerous external partners. Retrofitting for each ship required approximately 280,000 man hours to complete.

CO2 emissions factor lower for HFO than MGO

Ships equipped with scrubbers can use heavy fuel oil instead of low-sulfur marine gas oil as their primary fuel source. According to the International Maritime Organization’s Third IMO Greenhouse Gas Study, the CO2 emissions factor for HFO is less than for MGO on average, which should result in lower relative CO2 emissions as the NCLH increases its mix of HFO consumption.

The company expects its normalized fuel consumption mix will be approximately 50% HFO and 50% MGO in 2022.