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Costa Smeralda LNG bunkering a milestone for Italy

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The bunkering marks the 50th successful operation for a Costa Group ship
Costa Cruises’ Costa Smeralda successfully completed its first LNG bunkering operation in Italy, at the Port of La Spezia over the weekend.

Bunkering vessel Coral Methane was positioned alongside (bow to bow) Costa’s first LNG-powered vessel while it was berthed at Molo Garibaldi pier.

The operation was supported by the crews of Costa Smeralda and Coral Methane, the Italian Coast Guard, Port Authority of Eastern Ligurian Sea, local authorities and Shell, the LNG supplier partner for Costa Group and its parent company, Carnival Corp. & plc.

Costa Group’s 50th bunkering operation

‘With the LNG bunkering that took place in La Spezia, we also marked the 50th successful operation for a Costa Group ship,' commented Tom Strang, senior vice president, maritime affairs, Carnival Corp., who went on to add that the cruise line is ‘working to build an extensive, safe and reliable LNG infrastructure for cruise ships around the globe.’ 

Carla Roncallo, president, Port Authority of Eastern Ligurian Sea, and Franco Porcellacchia, sustainable innovation and infrastructure development vice president, Costa Group, described the bunkering as a ‘milestone’ both for Italy and the Port of La Spezia.


‘Every prescription adopted was duly observed and we are particularly satisfied that the operation had a regular evolution,' said Capt. Giovanni Stella, La Spezia Coast Guard, who was part of a working group to ensure safety standards, starting with navigation, environmental protection, fire prevention and workplace safety. ‘Thanks to this positive experience, we believe that other maritime authorities can implement the regulation we have defined in order to increase the LNG distribution infrastructure in Italian ports.’

Sustainable future

'Carnival Corporation and Costa were the first cruise operator to invest in sustainable innovation with LNG-powered ship technology and we continue to be committed to ensuring the highest environmental standards for a more sustainable future of cruising,' concluded Porcellacchia.

LNG-powered sister ship Costa Toscana is scheduled for delivery in the last quarter of 2021. LNG ship AIDAnova has been operating within the Costa Group fleet since 2018 and will be followed by two other sister vessels by 2023.

Carnival's third LNG-powered ship, P&O Cruises' Iona, was recently delivered.