Cruise passengers can now choose to embark from Civitavecchia or from La Spezia on the AIDAnova ship, currently the largest cruise ship in the world that can use liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the Mediterranean.
Aida Cruiser is a shipping company controlled by Costa Crociere, a company owned by Carnival Corporation, one of the world’s largest cruise shipowning companies. Franco Porcellacchia, vice president of Carnival, will participate in the upcoming 5th International Conference on Small Scale LNG – “The Small Scale LNG Use, Euro-Mediterranean Conference & Expo”, 15/16 May in Naples, Mostra d’Oltremare – to illustrate the company’s strategy in the Mediterranean, on a global level and the problems related to logistics of LNG. Carnival was the first company in the world to use LNG for its new ships.
With the arrival of LNG propulsion for large ships, the replacement of petroleum derivatives with LNG also begins in Italy and in the Mediterranean. LNG doesn’t emit sulfur oxides and fine dust and reduces by about 20% CO2 emissions. In the main Italian port cities, such as Genoa and Civitavecchia, atmospheric pollution of ships now exceeds that of other sources, such as car traffic and building heating. Furthermore, in the case of fuel leaks, natural gas does not release deadly oily substances for fish and seabirds.
AIDAnova was built in 2018 at the Meyer Shipyard in Papenburg (Germany), has a gross tonnage of 183.858 tons, is 337 meters long, 69 high with a draft of 8.8 mt and is 54.78 wide including the lifeboats. It can accommodate 8,200 people, of which 6,654 passengers and 1546 crew. There are 2,626 passenger cabins and 834 crew cabins.
Every Monday the ship stops in Civitavecchia, the “Port of Rome” and on Tuesday in La Spezia, as part of the weekly Mediterranean tour which also includes stops in Marseille, Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca, returning to Italy through the Bocche di Bonifacio Strait, between Corsica and Sardinia. This is the general itinerary until next 3 November, when AIDAnova will be replaced by Costa Smeralda, the new “flagship” ship of the Costa Crociere fleet. It will have equal size and will be also powered only by liquid natural gas. Another ship similar to these two, of the company MSC, is expected by the year in Italy for cruises in the Mediterranean.