© Tomorrow's Air

Climate Action From the Deck: Two ATTA Members Share

23 May 2024

The need to tackle emissions from the maritime sector is urgent, as businesses reliant on seafaring vessels feel increasing pressure to cut down on greenhouse gas emissions due to new global regulations, demands from customers, and expectations from shareholders. Within the tourism sector, scrutiny over the sustainability performance of cruise ships is intense, but similar concerns extend to cargo ships, tankers, and ferries, collectively contributing to three percent of global emissions. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, "if the maritime industry were a nation, it would rank sixth among the largest global greenhouse gas emitters."

At Tomorrow’s Air, we asked Carly Biggart, V.P. of Marketing at Hurtigruten, and Luke Errington, Founder and CEO of Swoop, to reflect on the challenges and opportunities facing the maritime industry. See an excerpt from the conversation below and learn more from these two company leaders when you join with other innovative leaders at the upcoming Innovate for Tomorrow Climate Action Summit in Norway.

Q: What do you think is going to be the hardest thing in transforming the maritime industry? 


Moving towards zero-emission sailings. For cruise in general, though, it is about becoming more sustainable, especially as the demand for cruises is growing exponentially, but with many customers wanting to cruise for as cheap as possible. That in itself is rather counterintuitive as mega ships are driving demand with rock-bottom rates, whereas niche cruise companies like Hurtigruten and some expedition brands are at the forefront of ensuring sustainable cruising, which, of course, does cost a bit more.

Our Sea Zero initiative is leading the way in transitioning to clean energy and energy-saving. We are at the forefront of this movement, forecasting energy saving with our future Sea Zero ships of 40-50%, which will make a significant difference overall. 

Q: What do you see as the most important opportunities for cruise companies operating in sensitive maritime environments? 


As a B Corp, we believe in responsible tourism and our duty to shape demand within the industry. By sharing the good practices and commitments of our partners we’re helping to support and promote the transition to a green economy. With biofuels and increased renewable energy options on the horizon , we are poised to significantly reduce our Scope 3 emissions.

We're also a big advocate for citizen science and many of our customers take part in scientific study whilst on their expedition; directly contributing to industry guidance and conservation in the region.

We support citizen science through our Swoop Conservation Fund. We designate 1% of our revenue to support rewilding initiatives, conservation and education in Antarctica and Patagonia, balancing our impact through the promotion of biodiversity and carbon sequestration. 

Innovate for Tomorrow

Read the full article at Tomorrow's Air Stories and find out how you can join in other Year of Climate Innovation gatherings led by the Adventure Travel Trade Association, Innovation Norway, and Tomorrow’s Air here.