The head of a United Kingdom travel agency warns that limits on sulfur emissions in emissions control areas (ECAs) could keep cruise ships from stopping at some destinations, according to The Telegraph.
Nigel Lindgard, director of Reader Offers, a travel agency specialising in cruises, and a former marketing director at Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, said that the cost of cruises could also rise because of the higher price of low-sulfur bunkers, and some cruise companies may retire older ships to comply with the rules.
"There is a worry over whether this fuel is available to purchase, so cruise ships may have to leave some areas of the world, because these ports won't be viable if you can't buy the fuel," Lindgard told delegates at the World Travel Market in London.
"At Fred Olsen, we had to part with a much loved ship Black Prince, which was very popular but not sailable with new environment laws.
"It's now sailing in coastal waters in Venezuela rather than out at open sea, so it's been recycled in a way."
The sulfur content of marine fuel used in the established ECAs of the Baltic, North Sea, and North America currently can not exceed 1.00 percent by weight, and that will drop to 0.1 percent by weight in 2015.
The cruise industry has warned that emissions rules could have a major impact on the tourism industry in Alaska, but one port official on the U.S. East Coast said supply of low-sulfur fuel should rise to meet demand.
Source: Ship & Bunker