the MSC World Europa liner delivered on Monday, the champion of CO2 reduction
This is the beginning of the end for large heavy fuel oil liners. The cruise world, constrained and forced, is making efforts: the first liquefied natural gas liner built in France, at Chantiers de l’Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was delivered on Monday to her owner, the Italian-Swiss MSC. It will be the ship that will emit the least CO2 in the world per passenger and per day. The liner leaves Saint-Nazaire this Wednesday around 6 a.m., heading for Qatar where it is to serve as a floating hotel for supporters during the football world cup.
22 decks, 70 meters high, 330 meters long, 47 meters wide and soon 8,700 people on board, including crew in 3,626 cabins in total. This giant of the seas has, like its predecessors, a whole range of leisure and activities on board.
A restaurant with a 2.0 farm on board
Modular sports grounds to become bumper car track, Formula 1 simulator, aqua park, games room, « it is a liner designed for a family and European clientele » says Jean-Yves Jaouen, director of operations at Chantiers. We will note this giant 30-meter toboggan to go down on the promenade, with its slot machines, its chocolate or jewelery shops, its cigar or champagne bars, its English pubs where the beer is brewed on board and its ten restaurants, one of which is in closed 2 point zero mode. « It’s a special restaurant, with planters and refrigerated bins to grow broccoli, dill or mint at high speed »explains Jean-Yves Jaouen.
the main originality cannot be seen, it is hidden in the bottom of the boat
In reality, the main originality of this liner cannot be seen. These are the LNG tanks. Isothermal cylinders located in the bottom of the ship which can store up to 4000 m3 of liquefied gas at -163 degrees, the gas is then extracted through pipes to run the engine. « The autonomy for a ship like this is 15 days. MSC has signed an agreement with TotalEnergies to be able to refuel at the port of Marseille equipped with a small LNG carrier » says the director of operations. The tests carried out in La Rochelle last month were conclusive.
A fuel cell on board: within 5 years, these batteries will make it possible to achieve zero emissions when the boat is at the quay » – Jean-Yves Jaouen
The other liners under construction at the Chantiers are also LNG or methanol. It will take 10 years to see them running on biofuel or green hydrogen. In the meantime, the MSC World Europa hides another surprise, this time in the heights, near the chimneys, again invisible: the world premiere prototype of a fuel cell. It works for the moment with gas, it is at the test stage but « within 5 years, we have good hopes of equipping all our ships and ensuring that these batteries supply the boat with electricity when it is at the quay, which would put an end to all polluting emissions in the ports » further specifies Jean-Yves Jaouen.
MSC paid one billion euros
« It’s an exceptional ship, it’s even the record holder for CO2 reduction per passenger and per day« , welcomes the boss of the Chantiers Laurent Castaing, « even if the gas is only a stage ». To the gas are added the energy savings like the ventilation which stops when the passenger leaves his cabin, or even the hull of the boat less resistant to water, so less power and less fuel are needed to move forward. « In total, the MSC World Europa reduces its CO2 emissions by 40% » assures Laurent Castaing.
On the side of MSC, the objective is still zero emissions by 2050. « It is indeed about transition. We must therefore continue to seek, to innovate » details Erminio Eschena, the director of industrial relations. For this boat, MSC paid more than one billion euros, « decarbonizing cruises has a cost, but we no longer have a choice and we have to act quickly ».
In the meantime, like a paradox. This least polluting liner in the world will go straight in Qatar to serve as a floating hotel for supporters during the soccer world cup. « We are providing a solid solution for the energy transition, but I don’t have to comment on an event that is a planetary event » replies Erminio Eschena.
The MSC World Europa delivered this Monday to the shipowner, will leave Saint-Nazaire this Wednesday, October 26 around 6 am.