For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Marcie Keever, 415.544.0790 x223,
Neesha Kulkarni, 202.222.0724,

Cruise Lines Graded on Environmental Impacts

Disney Ranks Dirtiest, Holland America Best in First-Ever Cruise Ship Environmental Report Card from Friends of the Earth

SAN FRANCISCO - Today Friends of the Earth issued the first-ever Cruise Ship Environmental Report Card, an assessment of the environmental and human health footprint of cruise lines and ships operating in the United States.

Millions of Americans take cruise vacations every year. Travelers
may not realize that taking a cruise is more harmful to the environment
and human health than many other forms of travel.

"For the first time, vacationers can decide which cruise to take
based on a ship's environmental and human health impacts," said Marcie
Keever, Clean Vessels Campaign Director at Friends of the Earth.
"Typically, cruise ship passengers are attracted to cruise vacations
with pictures of pristine waters and promises of unspoiled scenery and
abundant wildlife, but these passengers are never told that their
vacation could leave a dirty mark on the places they visit. This is
something travelers should pay close attention to: half of the cruise
lines we evaluated earned grades of C- or below."

Cruise ships carrying up to 7,000 passengers and crew are like
floating cities that release substantial amounts of pollution into the
air and water. Cruise ships have the potential to despoil the very
areas they visit and passengers often ask whether there are any cruise
lines or ships that are environmentally friendly.

Friends of the Earth's report card ranks 10 major lines-Carnival
Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, Cunard Cruise Line, Disney Cruise
Line, Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Princess Cruises,
Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Royal Caribbean Int'l, and Silversea
Cruises-according to three environmental criteria: sewage treatment
technology, air pollution reduction, and water quality compliance in
Alaskan waters. Holland America, Norwegian and Princess come out on
top, and Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Disney are rated the worst.

An explanation of Friends of the Earth's grading system, information
about the environmental impact of individual cruise ships, and actions
people can take to pressure cruise lines to clean up their act can be
found at

A PDF of the report can be found at


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Friends of the Earth is the U.S. voice of the world's largest grassroots environmental network, with member groups in 77 countries. Since 1969, Friends of the Earth has fought to create a more healthy, just world.

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