Joining the growing number of travel companies that are working to scale-back use of plastics, Carnival Corporation has announced that it will significantly eliminate its purchase and consumption of non-essential plastics by the end of 2021.
The effort to dramatically reduce single-use plastics across its nine global cruise line brands is part of an expansion of Operation Oceans Alive, the corporation’s program to further its ongoing commitment to achieve and sustain environmental compliance and excellence, the company said in a statement.
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Carnival Corporation and its various cruise line brands have already begun implementing various initiatives to reduce or eliminate plastic straws, cups, lids, and bags, among other single-use items.
The brands are also working to potentially eliminate individual servings of select packaged food items and other single-use plastics or decorative items used in food and beverage service as well as in staterooms.
Carnival said it is immediately focusing on reducing single-use plastic items that are not needed for sanitary or public health-related purposes.
“As part of the company’s stringent Health, Environment, Safety and Security (HESS) Policy and to comply with national and international regulations governing cruise ship operations, there are some single-use plastic items that cannot be completely eliminated, including plastic trash can liners in common areas and sanitary gloves, among others,” according to the statement from Carnival.
“We recognize that to be a responsible global organization, a good corporate citizen and the environmental leader our guests expect us to be, we need to continue to take proactive measures to ensure sustainability is ingrained in all aspects of our operation across our nine global cruise brands,” Bill Burke, Carnival’s chief maritime officer added in the just-released statement. “Our Operation Oceans Alive platform and this initiative to dramatically reduce single-use plastics across our global fleet are just some of the ways we are committed to continuously enhancing our operations and focus on environmental compliance and excellence.”
Burke said Carnival guests share the company’s commitment to protecting the environment.
Carnival’s Operation Oceans Alive program was designed to promote a culture of transparency, learning, and commitment across the company’s global operations.
Introduced in January 2018, the program was launched internally as a call to action to further ensure all employees receive proper education, training and oversight, as part of a continuing company-wide commitment to protecting the oceans, seas and destinations in which Carnival operates.
During the program’s first year, the corporation implemented innovative technology solutions for sustainability, accelerated environmental training efforts and improved communications to achieve a higher level of environmental awareness and a culture of environmental stewardship, Carnival said in its statement today.
The initiative is now being expanded externally as the platform for the corporation’s commitment to achieving and sustaining environmental compliance, excellence and leadership, and will continue to expand through increased funding, staffing and responsibility.
Operation Oceans Alive and the company’s plan to reduce single-use plastics are yet another example of Carnival’s efforts to meet its previously released 2020 Sustainability Goals.
As part of those broad goals, Carnival announced in 2018 that it had achieved its 25 percent carbon reduction target three years ahead of schedule. Carnival also says it is on track with its nine other 2020 sustainability targets for reducing its environmental footprint.