KTOO news station in Alaska reports today that the Environmental Protection Agency fined Princess Cruises $20,000 for dumping water from six swimming pools aboard the Golden Princess cruise ship into Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve in 2011.
The EPA announced the fine against the cruise line yesterday.
Princess was forced to sign a consent agreement admitting responsibility and subjecting itself to a final court order. Princess admitted that it violated the Clean Water Act in May 2011 when it discharged more than 66,000 gallons of pool water into the pristine waters of Glacier Bay.
Princess Cruises claims that a "software malfunction," on the Golden Princess, somehow caused all six of the pool valves to open. This dumped chlorinated water from all of the cruise ship’s pools as well as whirlpools into the national park and preserve.
The waste-water permits for large cruise ships prohibit the discharge of pool and spa water in national parks and refuges.
The fine comes at a time when the Governor of Alaska is agreeing to roll back the strict water emission laws of Alaska as urged by the cruise industry.
Princess Cruises has the worst environmental record in the Alaskan waters, and has been caught discharging illegal levels of waste water over the recent years. Before the state of Alaska began passing strict environmental laws, the cruise industry openly dumped raw sewage and chemicals throughout the Alaskan waters.