MSC Cruises has cut the first steel for its newest cruise ship MSC Euribia, the third Meraviglia-Plus class cruise ship and its most environmentally friendly to date.
MSC Euribia will be a sister ship to MSC Grandiosa and MSC Virtuosa, but will feature a range of environmentally friendly systems to reduce her carbon footprint.
The steel cutting ceremony for MSC Euribia was held at Chantiers de l’Atlantique in Saint Nazaire, Franceand marks the official start of construction.
“Just as the ancient goddess harnessed the winds, weather and constellations to master the seas, our vision is for the MSC Euribia to master the deployment of sustainable technologies to protect and preserve our precious marine ecosystem,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman, MSC Cruises.
MSC Euribia is due for delivery in June, 2023 and will be the 22nd ship in the MSC Cruises fleet and the second to run on LNG fuel, after MSC World Europa, the largest cruise ship MSC Cruises has ever ordered.
“With our first LNG-powered vessel already under construction, the MSC Euribia will further reduce emissions using the latest available technology. She will be one of the world’s most environmentally high-performing contemporary vessels,” he added.
LNG is the cleanest marine fuel currently available at scale, virtually eliminating local air pollutant emissions like sulfur oxides (99 percent), nitrogen oxides (85 percent) and particles (98 percent).
MSC Euribia’s engines will have the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 25% compared to standard fuels and as Bio and Synthetic forms of LNG become available, she will provide a “pathway toward eventual decarbonized operations,” according to a press release.
LNG is also key to the development of fuel cell solutions for shipping as these technologies cannot be operated with traditional fuels.
MSC Cruises, Chantiers de l’Atlantique and a consortium of leading energy and technology companies are working on the development of a pilot LNG-powered solid oxide fuel cell technology for cruise ships that could achieve a further significant greenhouse gas emissions reduction due to the higher efficiency of this technology.
MSC Cruises has previously stated its intention of achieving carbon-neutral operations in the future, and these developments are a part of that long-term plan.
The cruise line plans to power at least three upcoming ships with LNG, representing a total investment exceeding 3 billion euros. The first of these, MSC World Europa, is currently under construction in Saint Nazaire and set to enter service in October, 2022. Construction of the third, unnamed vessel is set to commence in early 2023.
Environmental technologies on MSC Euribia:
Engines and fuels:
4 Wärtsilä (12V and 16V) dual-fuel engines generally running on LNG, occasionally on 0.1 percent sulfur marine gas oil (MGO) so the ship will not require exhaust gas cleaning systems.
Selective catalytic reduction system that reduces NOx emissions by up to 90 percent when the ship runs on MGO (LNG offers a similar NOx reduction) – MSC Euribia will meet the IMO’s Tier III standards regardless of the fuel she uses.
Shore-to-ship power connectivity, allowing the ship to switch off its engines and connect to local power grids at ports where this infrastructure is available.
The ship will have advanced wastewater treatment system complying with the IMO’s so-called ‘Baltic Standard’ for wastewater, which is the strictest in the world.
Advanced ballast water treatment systems will prevent the introduction of invasive species in the marine environment through ballast water discharges, complying with the IMO’s Ballast Water Management Convention.
Protecting Marine Life:
An underwater radiated noise management system and specialized hull and engine room designs willminimize acoustic sound, reducing their potential effects on marine mammals in the surrounding waters.
MSC Cruises said that all its newbuilds incorporate a wide range of energy-efficient equipment that help reduce and optimize engine use, such as smart ventilation and advanced air conditioning systems with automated energy recovery loops that redistribute heat and cold to reduce demand.
The ships also use LED lighting controlled by smart management systems to enhance energy-saving further.