Carnival Cruise Lines - Final Grade: "F"

Carnival Cruise Lines launched in March 1972. Headquartered in Florida, Carnival is a subsidiary of Carnival Corp., which controls almost 50 percent of the worldwide cruise ship market. Carnival has 24 ships in its fleet, and all 24 ships have carrying capacities of 3,000 or more passengers and crew with half of the fleet having a carrying capacity of 4,400 or more passengers and crew.

Of Carnival’s 24 ships, only eight – the Carnival Dream, Carnival Freedom, Carnival Horizon, Carnival Magic, Carnival Panorama, Carnival Spirit, Carnival Vista, and Mardi Gras – have installed advanced sewage treatment systems, resulting in a grade of F for the company’s sewage treatment score. In recent years, Carnival has made multiple commitments to reduce air pollution. Carnival announced in its 2009 Sustainability Report that it would install shoreside power capability in all ships that home port at the Port of Long Beach by 2014. To date, we believe 17 ships may be shore power capable, but only four dock at ports with shoreside power, earning Carnival a D for air pollution reduction. Between 2010 and 2019, two Carnival ships traveled to Alaska and Alaskan authorities cited one of the ships with a total of four water quality violations. The other Carnival ship that went to Alaska was not allowed to discharge and did so illegally in 2016. Twenty-one of Carnival’s 24 ships have scrubbers installed earning Carnival an F for water quality compliance since scrubber use merely converts air pollution into toxic water pollution.

Carnival Corp. and its subsidiaries have been on criminal probation for the last four years as part of a $40 million fine and plea agreement for illegally dumping oily waste into the ocean and obstruction of justice for hiding it from regulators. During its probation, Carnival companies have been violating the terms of the criminal plea agreement by dumping wastewater, oil and plastic into the ocean and polluting our air in excess of federal and state regulations.

Carnival Corp. companies have all received an overall grade of F on this year’s report card due to their ongoing criminal behavior.

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Carnival Cruise Lines - Cruise Ship Fleet

Ship Name Cruise Line Total Persons on Board Destinations Sewage Treatment

Sewage Treatment

Has the cruise line installed the most advanced sewage and wastewater treatment systems available instead of dumping minimally treated sewage directly into the water? In determining a cruise line’s Sewage Treatment grade, we compared the number of cruise ships in the cruise line that have installed advanced sewage treatment systems against the total number of ships in the cruise line. Ships with AWTS were downgraded in 2020 since no companies publicly report on the performance of those advanced systems.

Air Pollution Reduction

Air Pollution Reduction

Has the cruise line installed shorepower or adopted cleaner fuel worldwide? In determining the Air Pollution Reduction grade for each ship in a cruise line, ships that dock at a port and plug in to available shoreside power hookups were graded. In addition, ships were given credit if they utilize low sulfur fuels continuously worldwide at levels lower than required by international law. Use of scrubbers is not considered since the scrubbers in use by the cruise industry simply convert air pollution emissions into water pollution through their scrubber wastewater discharges.

Water Quality Compliance

Water Quality Compliance

To what degree did cruise ships violate water pollution standards designed to better protect the Alaskan coast? In determining the Water Quality Compliance grade for cruise ships, we used notices of violation issued for individual cruise ships to each cruise line by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation from 2010 to 2019. In addition, we downgraded ships for their use of scrubbers since scrubbers convert air pollution emissions into water pollution.

Final Ship Grade
Curved Grading Scale
A 100-85 Excellent
B 84-70 Satisfactory
C 69-50 Needs Work
D 49-25 Poor
F 24-0 Unacceptable
N/A Not Graded No Discharge in Alaskan Waters or Scrubber Use

**For the 2021 Cruise Ship Report Card, we graded 18 cruise lines and 202 cruise ships of those 18 lines operating around the world. All cruise ships from each cruise line were included in this report card. Friends of the Earth relied on data gathered from the internet, government sources, the cruise line industry, and other public sources in order to determine the grades assigned to the cruise lines. Friends of the Earth did not independently verify that the technology graded in the report card was installed on the individual cruise ships.

Carnival Liberty Carnival Cruise Lines 4916 Florida, Bahamas 00 00 00 00
Carnival Pride Carnival Cruise Lines 3590 Caribbean, Central America, Europe, U.S. East Coast, Florida 00 00 00 00
Carnival Legend Carnival Cruise Lines 3540 Caribbean, Central America, Europe, Mediterranean, U.S. East Coast 00 07 00 00
Carnival Vista Carnival Cruise Lines 6427 Caribbean, Texas 05 04 00 02
Carnival Mardi Gras Carnival Cruise Lines 8245 Caribbean, Florida 05 04 00 02
Carnival Elation Carnival Cruise Lines 3526 Caribbean, Florida 00 04 00 00
Carnival Breeze Carnival Cruise Lines 5076 Caribbean, Florida, Texas 00 04 00 00
Carnival Glory Carnival Cruise Lines 4906 Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, Louisiana 00 04 00 00
Carnival Conquest Carnival Cruise Lines 4906 Caribbean, Florida 00 04 00 00
Carnival Ecstasy Carnival Cruise Lines 3526 Caribbean, Florida 00 04 00 00
Carnival Miracle Carnival Cruise Lines 3590 Alaska, Hawaii, Mexico, U.S. West Coast 00 07 00 00
Carnival Sunshine (formerly Carnival Destiny) Carnival Cruise Lines 4678 Caribbean, South Carolina 00 00 00 00
Carnival Panorama Carnival Cruise Lines 6596 Mexico, U.S. West Coast 05 07 00 03
Carnival Paradise Carnival Cruise Lines 3526 Caribbean, Florida 00 04 00 00
Carnival Dream Carnival Cruise Lines 5013 Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, Texas 05 04 00 02
Carnival Horizon Carnival Cruise Lines 6427 Caribbean, Florida 05 04 00 02
Carnival Triumph/Sunrise Carnival Cruise Lines 4981 Caribbean, Florida 00 00 00 00
Carnival Radiance Carnival Cruise Lines 4981 Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, U.S. West Coast, Florida, Texas 00 04 00 00
Carnival Valor Carnival Cruise Lines 4936 Caribbean, Louisiana 00 00 00 00
Carnival Splendor Carnival Cruise Lines 4884 Australia, New Zealand, South Pacific 00 04 01
Carnival Magic Carnival Cruise Lines 6110 Canada, Caribbean, Europe, U.S. East Coast, Florida 00 00 00 00
Carnival Sensation Carnival Cruise Lines 3526 Caribbean, Florida 00 04 01
Carnival Freedom Carnival Cruise Lines 4904 Alaska, Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, U.S. West Coast, Florida, Texas 00 00 00 00

Grading Methodology For The 2021 Cruise Ship Report Card

Friends of the Earth’s Cruise Ship Report Card ranks 18 major cruise lines and 202 cruise ships — AIDA Cruises, Carnival Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, Costa Cruises, Crystal Cruises, Cunard Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America Line, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Oceania Cruises, P&O Cruises, Princess Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Royal Caribbean Int’l, Seabourn Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, and Virgin Voyages — according to four environmental criteria: Sewage Treatment, Air Pollution Reduction, Water Quality Compliance and Transparency.

    • Sewage Treatment
      To determine a cruise line’s Sewage Treatment grade, we compared the number of cruise ships in the cruise line that have installed advanced sewage treatment systems (AWTS) against the total number of ships in the cruise line. Ships with AWTS were downgraded in 2021 because no companies publicly report on the performance of those advanced systems.
    • Air Pollution Reduction
      To determine the Air Pollution Reduction grade for each ship in a cruise line, ships that dock at a port and plug in to available shoreside power hookups were graded. In addition, ships were given credit if they utilize low sulfur fuels continuously worldwide at levels lower than required by international law. Use of scrubbers is not considered since the significant majority of scrubbers in use by the cruise industry simply convert air pollution emissions into water pollution through their scrubber wastewater discharges.
    • Water Quality Compliance
      To determine the Water Quality Compliance grade for ships operating in Alaska, we used notices of violation issued for individual cruise ships to each cruise line by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation from 2010 to 2019. We also failed ships for their scrubber use since scrubbers convert air pollution emissions into water pollution.
    • Transparency
      To determine the Transparency grade for each cruise line we graded each cruise line based on whether it responded to our 2021 requests for information regarding their environmental practices.
    • Criminal Violations
      All Carnival Corporation companies committed criminal environmental violations between 2017 and 2021.


Grades In Comparison: Report Cards From Previous Years

 

**For the 2021 Cruise Ship Report Card, we graded 18 cruise lines and 202 cruise ships of those 18 lines operating around the world. All cruise ships from each cruise line were included in this report card. Friends of the Earth relied on data gathered from the internet, government sources, the cruise line industry, and other public sources in order to determine the grades assigned to the cruise lines. Friends of the Earth did not independently verify that the technology graded in the report card was installed on the individual cruise ships.

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