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Environmental Impacts of the Cruise Ship Industry

Goodbye ‘Restore Passenger Rail’ Hello ‘Climate Liberation Aotearoa’ and their new campaign to reduce transport emissions.

The campaign to Restore Passenger Rail in Aotearoa has changed its name and expanded its goals. Now known as Climate Liberation Aotearoa, supporters say they are shifting to a wider focus on transportation with four broad goals: 1. Travel Less, 2. Travel Active, 3. Travel Public, 4. Travel Electric. These are in priority order.

“We have three requests; that the Climate Change Commission, National government, and local government include International Shipping and Aviation in their emissions budgets and Emissions Reduction Plans, that subsidies for the Cruise Industry are ended, and that Cruise Ships be banned from visiting sensitive natural environments” said spokesperson James Cockle.

On the morning of Sunday March 10th supporters of ‘Climate Liberation Aotearoa’ offered short comics to passengers from ‘The Majestic Princess’ containing information about the environmental impacts of the cruise ships industry as they walk about in Port Chalmers and the central city. Two local surfers also unfurled a banner on the water next to the shipping lane to say goodbye to the ship when it left.

“This huge floating hotel can carry over 4000 passengers and 2000 crew.

That’s 6000 toilets flushing as well as grey water from showers and washing machines and other sources. This liquid waste is filtered but a lot of chemicals still find their way into the ocean.” said local CLA supporter Bruce Mahalski

It’s estimated that the typical cruise ship passenger emits around 3-4 times as much carbon dioxide per kilometre as an economy class plane passenger. This is because these ships engines are always burning carbon rich marine diesel oil and heavy fuel oil (even when in port) to keep the electricity flowing and the water slides and pokie machines running.

“On a local level we would like to see cruise emissions added to Dunedin’s Zero Carbon Plan 2030. “

“This is the first protest against the cruise ship industry by Climate Liberation Aotearoa but it won’t be the last. We can be confident that this government will not do the right thing and include shipping and aviation emissions in the Emissions Reduction Plan. So today we are asking the passengers themselves to join us and demand that cruise ship companies pay for the emissions they produce. It’s time to end the free ride.” said Mahalski

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