Celebrity Cruises - Final Grade: "D+"

Celebrity Cruises was founded in 1989. Headquartered in Florida, Celebrity is a subsidiary of Royal Caribbean Cruises Limited (RCCL). Each of Celebrity’s current fleet of 10 cruise ships has a carrying capacity of more than 3,000 passengers and crew, with the exception of the Celebrity Xpedition, which travels to the Galápagos Islands and has a capacity of 160 passengers and crew. Celebrity’s newest ship, Celebrity Reflection, has a carrying capacity of almost 4,500 passengers and crew and was launched in October 2012.

Through its parent company RCCL, Celebrity made a public commitment in 2004 to install advanced sewage treatment systems on its entire fleet of cruise ships by 2008, and now 100 percent of its 10 ships have installed advanced sewage treatment systems, resulting in an A for the company’s sewage treatment score. None of Celebrity’s ships are plug-in capable; however, five Celebrity ships have scrubbers and four of those burn fuel worldwide with a sulfur content that is lower than what is required internationally or in Emission Control Areas, earning the company a D+ in the air pollution reduction category. While Celebrity operated four ships in Alaska from 2010 to 2014, it chose to discharge sewage from those ships outside of Alaskan waters, thereby avoiding Alaska’s strong water quality standards and giving Celebrity an ‘N/A’ for water quality compliance in Alaska.

Celebrity Cruises - Cruise Ship Fleet

Ship Name Total Persons on Board Destinations Sewage Treatment Air Pollution Reduction Water Quality Compliance Final Ship Grade
Celebrity Constellation 3169 Mediterranean, Asia, India, Middle East, Southeast Asia A A N/A A
Celebrity Eclipse 4096 Caribbean, Europe, Mediterranean, U.S. East Coast, Arctic, Mexico, South America A F N/A C-
Celebrity Equinox 4096 Caribbean, Central America, Mediterranean, Mexico, U.S. East Coast, Africa, Middle East, South America A F N/A C-
Celebrity Infinity 3169 Antarctic, Canada, Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, South America, U.S. East Coast, U.S. West Coast, Alaska A A N/A A
Celebrity Millennium 3367 Alaska, Canada, Central America, Mexico, U.S. West Coast, Asia, Australia, Hawaii, South Pacific, Southeast Asia, U.S. East Coast A A N/A A
Celebrity Solstice 4096 Alaska, Australia, Canada, Hawaii, New Zealand, South Pacific, U.S. West Coast, Southeast Asia A C N/A B+
Celebrity Summit 3157 Canada, Caribbean, U.S. East Coast A A N/A A
Celebrity Xpedition 162 South America A F N/A C-
Celebrity Reflection 4486 Caribbean, Mediterranean, U.S. East Coast, Mexico A F N/A C-
Celebrity Silhouette 4132 Europe, Mediterranean, U.S. East Coast, Africa, Arctic, Mexico, Middle East A F N/A C-

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Grading methodology for the 2016 Cruise Ship Report Card

Friends of the Earth’s Cruise Ship Report Card ranks 17 major cruise lines and 171 cruise ships -- Carnival Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, Costa Cruises, Crystal Cruises, Cunard Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, Fathom, Holland America Line, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Oceania Cruises, P&O Cruises, Princess Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Royal Caribbean Int’l, Seabourn Cruise Line and Silversea Cruises -- according to four environmental criteria: Sewage Treatment, Air Pollution Reduction, Water Quality Compliance and Transparency.

  • To determine a cruise line’s Sewage Treatment grade, we compared the number of cruise ships in the cruise line that have installed advanced sewage treatment systems against the total number of ships in the cruise line.
  • To determine the Air Pollution Reduction grade for each ship in a cruise line, we graded ships on whether they had installed scrubbers or were capable of plugging into shoreside power. Cruise ships that installed both technologies and docked in ports with shore power received an A, while ships that only installed scrubbers or only installed shore power capability but did not dock at ports with shoreside power were given a C. In addition, ships were given credit if they only utilize low sulfur fuels continuously at levels lower than required by international and U.S. law.
  • To determine the Water Quality Compliance grade for ships operating in Alaska, we used notices of violation issued for individual cruise ships to each cruise line by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation from 2010 to 2014. Ships were given an ‘N/A’ if they traveled to Alaska but avoided Alaska’s strong water quality standards by discharging outside of those protected waters.
  • To determine the Transparency grade for each cruise line we graded each line based on whether it responded to our 2015 requests for information regarding their environmental practices.
  • The grades for each of the four criteria were averaged to calculate the Final Grade for each cruise line.