The new rules regard stricter requirements for emissions and discharges from ships. Moreover, the NOx emission requirements and the regulation of the use of scrubbers will become stricter. What is more, a requirement for an environmental instruction for the individual ship and a prohibition against incineration of waste on board will be introduced.


The regulations will ban the use of scrubbers for removing SOx and NOx from emissions. This means that ships that do not use clean energy, such as batteries or hydrogen, will have to use low-sulphur fuel, catalytic converters, or other alternatives.

The sulphur emissions must also comply with international requirements in all the world heritage fjords. Ships which are protected or given status as historical by the Norwegian Directorate for Cultural Heritage may apply for exemption from certain provisions.

Bjørn Pedersen, Head of Department of Legislation and International Relations in the NMA, stated:

The new requirements are based on international requirements well-known to the cruise ship industry. What is remarkable, though, is that the requirements will apply to ships irrespective of the year of construction



The new requirements are expected to reduce emissions and discharges already in the summer of 2019. Over the next few years, the requirements will gradually become stricter, and the emissions and discharges will be less and less.

Another vital goal of the regulations is to reduce health risks for area residents. To meet this target, a key measure will be the instalment of shore power for all ships to limit emissions while in port, including supplying enough power where grids do not have the necessary capacity.

The NMA will verify that the requirements are being met by measuring emissions and discharges and conducting inspections on board the vessels. Moreover, the NMA is now considering possible measures to reduce emissions and discharges from ships elsewhere in Norway.

In 2005, the West Norwegian Fjords were included on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Norway is committed to ensure that the world heritage site the West Norwegian Fjords is not exposed to harm or influences that could damage the values that formed the basis for the inscription on the World Heritage List.