MSC Cruises’ Path To Net Zero Cruising



Report outlines key milestones and steps taken toward Company’s sustainability commitments

  • Progress achieved across four key pillars, including targeting net zero operations by 2050, supporting sustainable tourism, and developing a more diverse workforce
  • 33.5% drop in fleetwide carbon intensity since 2008
  • Milestone reduction in emissions from launch of MSC World Europa, world’s largest LNG-powered cruise ship featuring first solid oxide fuel cell technology system onboard a large cruise vessel

Geneva, Switzerland – July 20, 2023 – MSC Cruises published its 2022 Sustainability Report on Thursday, detailing progress on the company’s environmental and social practices throughout the year. The 64-page report lays out accomplishments including a substantial reduction in fleetwide carbon intensity, the introduction of new technology in the march toward net zero operations by 2050, growth in sustainable tourism efforts, and the development of a more diverse workforce.

Progress under MSC Cruises’ Sustainability Action Plan is divided into four key pillars, which are subdivided into six workstreams to which the company has publicly pledged to remain accountable. Below is a summary of progress toward each:


  • Workstream: Transitioning to Net Zero Emissions
  • 33.5% reduction in fleetwide carbon emissions intensity since 2008
  • First LNG ship introduced to the fleet (MSC World Europa)
  • First solid oxide fuel cell system installed on a large cruise vessel
  • Development of new itinerary optimization software to reduce emissions of existing fleet
  • Workstream: Local Air Quality
  • Two ships delivered with shore power capability (MSC World Europa and MSC Seascape)
  • Two existing ships retrofitted with shore power capability (MSC Poesia and MSC Preziosa)
  • Workstream: Scrutinizing Resource Use and Waste
  • 9% reduction in water consumption per guest compared to 2021
  • Two ships delivered fully compliant with the most stringent water treatment and discharge standards (MSC World Europa and MSC Seascape)
  • 6.5% increase in waste segregated for recycling (now over 25% of total onboard waste)


  • Workstream: Supporting Our People
  • New recruitment strategy expanding diversity of workforce
  • Average of 26 hours of training performed per person


  • Workstream: Supporting Sustainable Destinations
  • Miami and Barcelona terminals on track to receive LEED certification upon completion
  •  Provided workshops on sustainable operations for tour operators
  • Began using new tool to assess biodiversity impact of shore excursions and other activities


  • Workstream: Procuring Sustainably
  • Renewed focus on removal of single-use plastic by 2024
  • Substantial increase in positive environmental credentials for onboard retail products

Linden Coppell, Vice President of Sustainability & ESG, MSC Cruises, said: “To ensure the appropriateness and continued relevance of our Sustainability Strategy and our Sustainability Action Plan, we are in ongoing dialogue with our employees, guests, and key external stakeholders. Through this listening exercise, we can ensure that our current focus areas are appropriate and identify any new areas as they arise – while we closely monitor the progress on the six key pillars of our action plan.”

MSC Cruises’ sustainability strategy is informed by a materiality assessment carried out in 2019 and revisited in 2021. The assessment ensures attention is focused on the issues most important to external and internal stakeholders, and where the company’s impact on the world means it has a responsibility to act. The Sustainability Advisory Board oversees these efforts for the entirety of the Cruise Division of MSC Group, which includes the MSC Cruises brand, and is chaired by Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman of MSC Cruises.

Additional details of MSC Cruises’ progress within its Sustainability Action Plan include:

PLANET – Transitioning to net zero emissions, improving local air quality and scrutinizing resource use and waste

MSC Cruises is fully committed to playing its part in addressing climate change and promoting ocean biodiversity, and the company is accelerating efforts to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Through close collaboration with technology companies, shipyards and fuel providers, the cruise line strives to push the limits of innovation and explore new possibilities. A momentous step in this crucial journey was the delivery of its first LNG-powered ship in 2022, marking a significant milestone on the path to a more sustainable future. MSC Cruises remains steadfast in its commitment to creating a more environmentally responsible cruise industry.

PLACE – Supporting sustainable destinations, developing terminals

MSC Cruises allows guests to visit some of the most beautiful and exciting destinations the world has to offer, and the company strives to deliver positive social and economic outcomes in the places it serves. Investments in sustainable cruise terminals are creating jobs and encouraging more visitors. MSC Cruises is also an active supporter of destination stewardship and continues to work collaboratively with Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and other cruise lines to manage visitor numbers and support sustainable tourism. The line is a member of the CEO-led Sustainability Committee and the Sustainability Task Force of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), working closely with travel industry partners to develop and implement sustainable solutions for the industry.

PEOPLE – Supporting our people and enhancing crew well-being

MSC Cruises’ number one priority is keeping guests and crew safe and well. The company takes pride in the healthcare options aboard MSC Cruises ships and continues to maintain strict sanitation practices in the wake of COVID-19. MSC Cruises also has a comprehensive safety management system in place to identify risks before incidents occur. The crew onboard plays an important role in making the guest experience a success, and the cruise line knows how important it is to support their well-being. The company provides crewmembers with the training required to do a good job and supports those with high potential who want to grow their careers from within.

PROCUREMENT – Procuring with a responsibility to the environment

Every year, MSC Cruises procures thousands of different items to support its ships and guests, ranging from engine parts to hand soap, and from crew uniforms to food and drink. Each of those items eventually has to be loaded onto a constantly moving fleet of ships. In 2022, the company’s Sustainable Procurement Committee initiated a comprehensive review of its processes to identify opportunities to find and move those items more sustainably. The cruise line wants to go beyond specific programs – such as eliminating single-use plastics onboard – and shift its mindset so that every purchasing decision is made with the environment and worker wellbeing in mind.

See more from MSC Cruises here.

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