Newspapers in Alaska are reporting that cruise lines are trying to avoid Alaska's strict waste water laws.
The Juneau Empire reports that the cruise industry is complaining to lawmakers in Alaska that the limits on ammonia are too strict. The cruise industry's "Alaska Cruise Association" - comprised of Miami based cruise lines - is again posturing to reposition its cruise ships if they cannot make a deal which permits them to pollute.
The cruise industry is known for its strong arm tactics of threatening financial harm to the port cities if they can't get their way around environmental regulations. The newspaper quotes a consultant for the "Alaska Cruise Association, Mike Tibbles, as saying:
"If this stands, ship deployments could be altered and port times may be reduced," he said. "The result could very likely be fewer economic opportunities for our businesses."
Alaska passed strict wastewater regulations in 2006 for sewage, graywater and other treated water dumped into state waters.
The president of the "Responsible Cruising in Alaska" organization, Chip Thoma, believes that the cruise industry's history of polluting Alaskan waters proves the need to regulate cruise ship discharges:
"The cruise ships engaged in a great deal of deception to hide their malfeasance."
The carbon footprint of the cruise industry is incredible. Cruise ships burn nasty bunker fuel and dump millions of gallons of sewage. If left unregulated, the cruise industry will save money by avoiding implementing new technologies. We have addressed cruise line pollution and the battle to protect Alaska's waters from the cruise industry's discharges of sewage in prior articles:
Royal Caribbean's Vision of the Seas cruise ship AlaskanLibrarian's Flickr photostream
Celebrity Cruises' Mercury cruise ship AlaskanLibrarian's Flickr photostream