Our Environmental Commitment

P&O Cruises and our parent company Carnival Corporation and plc take our environmental responsibilities very seriously and are committed to reducing our environmental impact.

We are dedicated to preserving the marine environment in which we operate, and believe it is our duty to follow environmental practices which set a high standard of excellence and responsibility. 

Carnival's 2020 Sustainability Goals

Health, Safety and Security of Guests and Crew

Our commitment to the health, safety and security of guests and staff continues with new Zika virus prevention procedures and disinfection product efficiency testing against the Norovirus. The $500m investment to enhance ship safety and reliability, standardised security testing, occupational health and safety best practice roll out and piloting of new technologies all support this integral corporate objective. Striving to be free of injuries, we continue to build on our commitment to protect the health, safety and security of our guests, employees and all others working on our behalf.

Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems

On track with 59% of our fleet now equipped with Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS), we’ve continued to improve our emissions quality. With $400m investment, we’re leading the way to significant development of these limited marine application EGCS and environmental technology. We aim to continue to improve the quality of our emissions into the air by developing, deploying and operating Exhaust Gas Cleaning systems across the fleet capable of reducing sulfur compounds and particulate matter from our ship’s engine exhaust.

Waste Water Purification

Our waste management plan specifies the responsible and efficient control, disposal, elimination and minimisation of the waste we generate, including water. We’re successfully on target with a waste water purification fleet-wide increased capacity of 3.3 percentage points, and remain committed to continued reduction utilising technologies to meet or exceed industry standards and regulations on board and in port. We aim to increase Advanced Waste Water Purification System (AWWPS) coverage of our fleet wide capacity by 10 percentage points by 2020 relative to our 2014 baseline.

Shore Power

Ship shore power capacity is available on over 40% of our corporate fleet. Carnival is also working to secure increased availability elsewhere. We aim to increase shore power coverage of Carnival Corporation and plc's fleet-wide capacity in relation to future port capabilities.

Ethics and Diversity

Recognised as a top employer for diversity and equality by the Human Rights Campaign and Black Enterprise Magazine, we continue to build an inclusive workforce. We’ve created a diversity council and published a slavery and human trafficking statement. Health, Environmental, Safety and Security is at the heart of all our operations. We aim to continue to build a diverse and inclusive workforce and provide all employees with a positive work environment and opportunities to build a rewarding career to further drive employee engagement.

Water Efficiency

Through investment in technologies such as reverse osmosis our ships are capable of producing more of the potable water required onboard without significant increases in energy usage. The use of efficient water production systems coupled with investment in water saving devices and raising awareness with our guests has enabled us to reduce our reliance on bunkering water in port. We aim to continue to improve water use efficiency of our shipboard operations by 5% by 2020 relative to our 2010 baseline, as measured by liters per person per day.

Partner Code of Conduct and Ethics

Supply chain compliance with our revised Business Partner Code of Conduct and Ethics continues with a new pledge to support human rights and the communities we visit through observance of the UK’s Modern Slavery Act. Supplier efforts to combat slavery and human trafficking – in addition to their business ethics, compliance and sustainability - are now also disclosed via our new Supplier Evaluation Questionnaire. We aim to further develop and implement vendor assurance procedures ensuring compliance with Carnival Corporation & plc’s Business Partner Code of Conduct and Ethics.

Waste Reduction

Our recycling initiatives and partnerships have put us securely on track to reduce on board operational waste by 5%. Where facilities exist, we aim to recycle as much of our waste as we can or donate items for reuse if suitable. All of our ships have on-board waste processing equipment to facilitate the segregation and correct packaging of waste for offload. Our supply chain works with suppliers to minimise packaging sent to the ships and our food and beverage teams work hard to ensure minimal waste is produced whilst delivering our guests expectations. We want to continue to reduce waste generated by our shipboard operations by 5% by 2020 relative to our 2010 baseline, as measured by kilograms of non-recycled waste per person per day.

Carbon Footprint

Committed to sustainability and environmental protection in the communities we visit, we’ve effectively reduced our carbon footprint ahead of schedule with a 24.8% reduction in our equivalent CO₂ emissions. Combined with the first low carbon fuel powered ship – with another seven on order – and our Wärtsilä partnership to drive further engine efficiency, we’ll continue improving the quality of our air emissions. We aim to reduce the intensity of CO2e (equivalent carbon dioxide) emissions from our operations by 25% by 2020 relative to our 2005 baseline.

Safeguarding the environment


Through our commitment to reduce our environmental impact, we’re firmly on track to reduce our on board operational waste by 5% before 2020. Together with our waste vendors and ports, we aim to minimise waste being sent for un-necessary disposal, examples include turning waste fuel sludge into a useable fuel supporting local  businesses or providing items for charitable re-use. 

We evaluate shoreside waste facilities in advance and aim to manage any lack of recycling infrastructure by retaining waste materials on board until we reach a port offering the services we require. We seek new opportunities to reuse materials and equipment on board or find others who can use items that are in a good condition. If this is not possible, we ensure conscientious disposal including the use of certified recovery units for items such as refrigerators to reduce any Ozone Depleting Substance (ODS) releases.

We provide opportunities for our guests to assist our recycling efforts with segregated waste disposal and through our FATHOM - TRAVELdeep™ programme; to date, over 2,500 guests have supported paper recycling and craft entrepreneurship schemes in the Dominican Republic. Our crew - in particular those directly involved in waste management operations – are rigorously trained as part of their environmental awareness and we aim to roll out standardised reporting across our fleet and ports of call to increase transparency, aid trend analysis and to continue to meet or exceed all industry regulations.


The oceans and communities we visit boast spectacular biodiversity for guests to explore. We’re committed to protecting the marine environment, minimising our impact and ensuring we use resources efficiently and sustainably, our ethos is captured within the recently launched “Operation Oceans Alive” campaign. 

We continue to invest in Reverse Osmosis plants onboard our fleet allowing potable water to be created from desalinated sea water. The use of RO plants significantly increases the ships abilities to create their own water, reducing the need to load water from shore supplies – especially in areas where fresh water may be scarce.

Emissions continue to decrease thanks to strategies such as our Wärtsilä partnership driving fuel efficiency. We provide donations, volunteer initiatives - including coastal clean-up projects - and philanthropic programmes. Our Fathom TRAVELdeep™ programme has supported ventures including reforestation and food cooperatives. Other conservation partners have developed protection programmes such as the Wildlife Trafficking Alliance’s campaign to reduce illegal wildlife product demand, The Nature Conservancy’s habitat mapping programme, and UNESCO’s ongoing mission to safeguard world heritage sites.

Responsible sourcing

The source of our supplies directly affects our communities and the environment, it is vital that we understand their providence and invest in sustainable development. Our BSI ISO 14001certification requires sustainable resourcing, climate change mitigation and life-cycle management from production to disposal.

Our Business Partner Code of Conduct coupled with the Ethics and Supplier Evaluation Questionnaire provide a framework to ensure suppliers meet our expectations of ethics, compliance and sustainability. We work closely with them to implement eco-friendly initiatives such as the use of recycled materials and the minimisation of packaging, as well as the provision of responsible guest activities such as excursions.

With comprehensive training, our staff understand our expected standard of behaviour as well as our dedication to transparency and disclosure. Our risk assessments and audits also help us focus our resources on any identified compliance risks.

To protect the ecosystems and economies of the communities we visit, we’ve successfully reduced our carbon footprint by 24.8% since 2005. An additional 4% of our water is now  created from desalinated sea water. We utilise our ships’ fresh water holding capabilities so we can adapt our water sourcing patterns for the remainder and only bunker water from where it is abundant.

Furthermore all of our crew and shoreside staff receive environmental awareness, ethics and diversity training. Suppliers are also required to sign up to our Business Partner Code of Business Conduct and Ethics.

Energy efficiency

Fuel provides the energy – crucial to our guests’ enjoyment of on board amenities – for our fleet’s propulsion and on board hotel power requirements. Responsible for over 97% of our emissions, fuel usage is the main contributor to our carbon footprint. As a result, we’ve implemented multiple energy-saving and conservation initiatives, successfully reducing emissions by 24.8% to date.

Our BSI ISO 50001 certification provides a framework for energy management and our Corporate Energy Conservation Group has effectively reduced overall consumption and identified fuel saving opportunities. Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS) use technology to remove up to 99% of sulphur oxides and well over 50% of particulate matter from engine exhaust

We’ve expanded our unique Wärtsilä engine maintenance and monitoring partnership to drive further gains in engine efficiency, safety and reliability. Our Fleet Operation Centres’ advanced data capture systems also inform us of the optimisation and efficiency of engine conditions, emissions, fuel consumption and energy use. Ship shore power capacity is available on over 40% of our corporate fleet. Carnival is also working to secure increased availability on our fleet and within the ports we visit. We are pleased to be building two LNG powered vessels. The first enters the fleet in 2020 with the second joining the fleet in 2022. The development and investment in these new ships aids our commitment to exceed environmental compliance requirements.

Clean water

P&O Cruises fleet exceed international requirements for the discharge of sewerage as all waste is treated prior to discharge either via Marine Sanitary Devices or our Advanced Waste Water Treatment Systems. Our discharge policies reflect those of the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) to whom we are a signatory member, these policies are significantly more stringent than those required by international law. With careful planning and strict adherence to the discharge requirements, we aim to minimise our impact on the ports we visit and within the areas we sail.

P&O Cruises has invested in Ballast water treatments systems and have been a market leader in installing IMO and US Coastguard approved systems manufactured by Alfa Laval. The technology uses filtration and UV treatment in a specially designed reactor to carry out biological disinfection. Our ballast systems are tested on an annual basis by an independent company – the Ballast Water Centre, testing is carried out to the full IMO D2 standard, ensuring that the systems are truly doing what they are designed to do. Carnival Corporation is proud to facilitate projects such as our annual Honduras coastal clean-ups, removing waste and debris from the marine environment. 

Ethics and diversity

Guest and employee safety is paramount. Of parallel importance is how we protect the environment, develop our workforce, strengthen stakeholder relations and enhance our communities in a responsible and transparent manner. We work hard to reduce our impact with the control of fuel, electricity, water and food as well as waste, emissions and our supply chain. We give back to communities through donations, philanthropic initiatives, fundraisers and volunteer schemes such as our Fathom TRAVELdeep™ programmes. We also collaborate with organisations focusing on the arts, human rights, education, health and the environment, and are proud of our partnerships with The Nature Conservancy and UNESCO World Heritage.

We provide emergency aid after natural disasters via donations and our ships deliver vital supplies. We’re an equal opportunities employer. We hire talented men and women for every position according to experience, skills, education and character. We’ve created a diversity council and are proud to be among the Human Rights Campaign’s top best places to work for LGBTQ equality for the third year, and to have been recognised by Black Enterprise Magazine as one of 50 best companies for diversity. 

Single use plastics

Single use plastics pose significant environmental concerns. They are not biodegradable. Instead, they break down into tiny particles and release toxic chemicals. These end up in our rivers and our oceans, where they have a serious impact. This is why P&O Cruises has stated an intention to remove single use plastics from hotel operations on our ships by the end of 2022. This is an important part of our overall environmental compliance plan.To achieve this, we are working with our suppliers to address items containing single use plastics, such as straws, water bottles and food packaging.