Cruise ship could get a 100'000$ fine for using illegal bunker fuel

What a great way to drive away tourism.

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Hurray for the French Prosecutor. I have asthma that is triggered by particulates and sulfur oxides. Why allow our oceans to be the garbage disposal for the residual products of the refining of high-sulfur crude oils? Sulfur has beneficial uses: as a fertilizer for some soils, for sulfur-based batteries...

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Those cruise ships are dirty as hell and many places would be far more pleasant without them invading places down here on the med. Good on Norway for bringing in the new law to ban them from the fjords if not running in a cleaner way.

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Whilst it is difficult to establish the link between pollution and disease on a case-by-case basis, statistical studies, such as that published in June 2015 by the German University of Rostock and the Helmhotz Zentrum Munich research centre for environmental health, have drawn up estimates of the number of deaths specifically due to maritime pollution. They found that the figure was around 60,000 premature deaths, mainly caused by pulmonary or cardiovascular diseases.

The World merchant fleet has around 52'000 ships so this means each ship (cargoes, tankers, cruise ships...) kills one person each year with air pollution.

 

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I suggest you have to look a bit further than the matter of oil slightly over the sulfur limit to see the dynamics playing out here.  Carnival is owned by Israeli migrants to Miami, who in turn have purchased a number of other old brands, including Holland_America Lines, and P&O Lines. They now totally dominate the Western cruise market, having pushed a number of old and majestic European passenger-ship companies to the brink.  In doing so, the Israelis have not made any friends.  Is this prosecutorial overkill a reaction to Israeli business practices?  Probably.

These days, ships have two separate fuel tanks and systems: one for the marine equivalent of Diesel, known generally as "marine gasoil;"  the other being the heavy bunker stuff, typically either Intermediate fuel oil, rated as IFO 180, or Heavy Fuel Oil, rated as HFO 380. The drill is to switch over when some 20 miles out at sea, so by the time you get to port the ship has flushed the heavy bunker out of the fuel lines and is running on the Diesel.  that also allows the main engines to be shut down for the stay, with the ship running on generator engines which are all light diesel.  Another good reason to have the lines flushed is that most engines cannot be started on the heavy stuff, so you start on the Diesel and then when everything is warmed up, you switch over to the Bunker. 

I would be dubious that that drill was not followed here.  For the prosecutor to know all of this is a stretch; my guess is that some officious port inspector went on board, pulled a sample of the oil, and then the charges were laid, although in fact the ship was not running on the bunker, it was (at that point) nothing more than cargo.  And you get that sort of behavior from lawyers. 

The Israelis make buckets of millions off those cruise boats;  that 100K is nothing they cannot handle. 

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