Photo: Dr. Jean-Paul Rodrigue, 2012.
Cruise Ship Store Loading and Cold Ironing
A cruise ship requires a fast store loading process since port turns between cruises are relatively short (8 to 12 hours on average). On the above photo, a cruise ship (MS Zuiderdam of Holland America Line) is being serviced at the Port of Vancouver. Because the pier is higher than the cargo door, a lift system is used to lower cargo pallets (mostly food) to the cargo dock level. To mitigate the environmental impacts of cruise ships docked at the cruise terminal adjacent to its central business district, Port Metro Vancouver installed cold ironing facilities (the blue structure on the above photo) in 2009 to provide electric power to ships. This enables a cruise ship to cut its bunker engines and thus considerably reduce its emissions at the cruise port. Alaskan cruises are those relying the most on cold ironing, particularly in light of the environmental sensitivity of the region visited. About 5% of the energy spent on Alaskan cruises is from cold ironing.