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LOI signed to build 'world's greenest cruise ship'

The Ecoship is scheduled for delivery in 2020.

Updated on 31 May 2017 07:38 GMT

Peace Boat, Japan's largest cruise organisation, has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Finnish shipbuilding company Arctech Helsinki Shipyard Inc. to build the Ecoship - a vessel described by the project partners as "the world's greenest cruise ship".

The agreement was announced during Nor-Shipping - the maritime trade fair being held this week in Oslo.

Peace Boat director and founder, Yoshioka Tatsuya, said: "We have agreed with Arctech to build the Ecoship, the most innovative and ecologically friendly cruise vessel ever. We believe this ship will be a game changer for the shipping industry and will contribute to the protection of the environment. It will be a flagship for climate change.

"We are very happy to work together with a Finnish shipyard, and look forward to exploring clean and sustainable technologies with partners throughout this region, which is known for its environmental leadership."

Esko Mustamaki, CEO of Arctech, remarked: "We are very excited to work with Peace Boat in the construction of this very special vessel. Arctech has a long experience in design and construction of special products. Ecoship will combine Arctech's know-how in technically advanced and environmentally friendly vessels with the well-established expertise of the Finnish shipbuilding network in designing and building of high-class cruise vessels and other special products. Arctech is a forerunner in developing and applying technological innovations, including LNG propulsion."

With the Ecoship, Peace Boat set out to create a vessel design and a set of specifications that incorporates the latest environmentally friendly technologies, is out in front of incoming regulations, and offers a transition model towards a low-carbon economy. The process began in 2014 at a charrette in Hamburg where shipping and non-maritime experts worked together to develop a whole-system integrated design approach, based on the belief that elements of a system work best when they are specifically designed to complement rather than compensate for each other.

The Ecoship design incorporates cutting-edge technology to improve fuel efficiency, reduce waste and minimize environmental impacts. Some of the most notable features include: ten masts to harness wind energy for propulsion; solar panel-covered sails with a 6,000-square-metre top-deck solar farm; and a waste heat recovery system where it is hoped that 80 percent of the energy normally lost in the air and in the water can be reclaimed for use.

The new vessel is said to reduce CO2 emissions by 40 percent and has been hailed by the project partners as "a transitional model for low-carbon maritime transport and a flagship for climate action".

A final contract for the 2,000-passenger, 60,000-gross-tonne (grt) Ecoship is expected to be signed "shortly", the project partners said on Thursday. It is scheduled for delivery in the spring of 2020.

The Ecoship, with its nature-inspired architectural design by Spanish company Oliver Design, will be the platform for Peace Boat's round-the-world cruise, carrying 6,000 people per annum. It is due to host exhibitions on green technology in up to 100 ports per year and serve as a floating sustainability laboratory contributing to research on the ocean, climate and green marine technology.

Related Links:

MoU to develop 'Ecoship' cruise vessel

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