The world’s largest cruise ship has set sail from Miami, Florida, on its maiden voyage, but there are concerns about the ship’s methane emissions.
The ship is 365 meters (1,197 feet) long, has 20 decks and can carry 7,600 passengers. It is owned by Royal Caribbean Group. It is now continues with a seven-day journey to cross several countries.
Environmentalists warn that ships using liquefied natural gas (LNG) will leak dangerous methane into the atmosphere. Although LNG burns better than natural marine fuels such as fuel oil, there is a risk that some of the gas escapes, causing methane to leak into the atmosphere.
Methane is a more powerful greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. “It’s a bad move,” Bryan Comer, director of the Marine Program at the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), was quoted as saying by the Reuters news agency. “We can estimate that using LNG as marine fuel produces over 120% more life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions than marine fuel,” he said.
Earlier this week, the ICCT released a report stating that methane emissions from LNG fueled ships were higher than current regulations assumed.