The Lindblad Expeditions Holdings’ new polar expedition vessel “National Geographic Endurance”, hit the water for its first float test. Specifically, the designer of the cruise ship Ulstein, informed that float-out was successfully completed in Ulsteinvik, Norway on December 7.
The Alaskan state legislature is to restructure the Ocean Rangers program, monitoring cruise ship traffic in the vulnerable waters of Alaska, in opposition with a recently-imposed veto by Alaskan Governor Mike Dunleavy, announced a month ago.
Hurtigruten will be christening the world’s first hybrid electric-powered expedition cruise ship this fall in Antarctica. MS Roald Amundsen will become the first ship ever to be christened in Antarctica. MS Roald Amundsen features green technology. The hybrid electric-powered expedition cruise ship is using battery packs to support its low-emission engines and will reduce CO2 emissions.
Russia seized two cruise ships from the Canada-based cruise company One Ocean Expeditions, allegedly ‘without warning’. The cruise company has leased the two Russian-seized cruise vessels using them to transmit travellers on cruises through the Arctic and Antarctic.
Hurtigruten launched silent, electric-powered and emission-free catamarans. The company has collaborated with Norwegian startup Brim Explorer, in order to introduced the battery powered catamarans, which are custom built for Polar water exploration. Starting operations in the spring of 2020, the 24-meter vessel will operate in daily ocean excursions from Longyearbyen on the Arctic island of Svalbard.
The Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators has included Iceland in its geographical range. Guidelines and other measures will also be applied to ensure sustainable expedition cruise operations in Iceland. At least 25% of AECO’s operating members have itineraries that already include or will include Iceland in the future.
According to One Ocean Expeditions, its ship, the ‘Akademic Ioffe’, ran aground in the western Gulf of Boothia on Friday, August 24. However, in the latest update, the company informed that the passenger ship has now been refloated. All passengers are reported as safe.
On the aftermath of the polar-bear-shot-dead incident by a Hapag-Lloyd guard, AECO reiterated its guidelines for passengers and guards when encountering polar bears, to ensure that wildlife is not disturbed in this extremely fragile environment, as well as ensuring human safety.
As Hapag-Lloyd Cruises informed, during the weekend, on a trip ashore in Spitsbergen during a Bremen cruise, a polar bear guard was attacked on land by a polar bear. The guard suffered head injuries, however, he was responsive after the attack and was airlifted. However, the polar bear was shot dead.
This summer, Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators is working with cruise operators on identifying how the expedition cruise industry can drastically reduce the use of disposable plastics on ships. AECO will also continue to engage thousands of cruise passengers in beach cleanups in the Arctic.
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