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Cutting Emissions: Hurtigruten Fleet Gets Large-Scale Green Upgrade

Hurtigruten Norway has made a large-scale investment in batteries and biofuel, in an upgrade that will cut emissions by a massive 25%.

Hurtigruten Norway has made a large-scale investment in batteries and biofuel, in an upgrade that will cut emissions by a massive 25%.

Batteries, shore power and biofuel are at the core of Hurtigruten Group’s large-scale green upgrade of the entire fleet of Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express ships, due to be completed by 2023.

These upgrades will result in a CO2 emissions reduction by at least 25%, and NOx emissions cut by 80%.

“The world’s most beautiful voyage just got even better,” Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express CEO, Hedda Felin, said. 

“We are combining the best available technical solutions and cutting CO2 emissions along the Norwegian coast by at least a quarter. And most importantly, we are laying the foundation for introducing new and even more efficient environmental solutions as they are developed.”

So what are the steps to a greener fleet? Let’s find out:

Battery hybrid upgrades

Hurtigruten Green

The ships will be upgraded using a combination of technologies and solutions specially adapted for each individual ship.

All ships have already been fitted with shore-power connectivity to fully eliminate emissions when connected in port.

Three ships – MS Richard With, MS Nordlys and MS Kong Harald – will undergo a full-fledged transformation to battery-hybrid power, with the installation of new low-emission engines and large battery packs.

President Egil Haugsdal of Kongsberg Maritime (KM), which is undertaking the three-ship hybrid conversion, said this was one of the largest environmental vessel upgrade projects ever done in Europe. 

“For us, it’s rewarding to work with a company which shares our ambitious approach to technology and environmental issues. The green upgrades of Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express’ ships represent a sustainable choice for their existing fleet,” said Mr Haugsdal.

New steps towards zero emissions 


Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express is part of Hurtigruten Group, which also includes Hurtigruten Expeditions, the world’s largest expedition cruise line.

Hurtigruten Group, CEO Daniel Skjeldam, said the company’s goal was to operate all its ships and all its cruises completely emission free. 

“While we get one step closer day-by-day, we cannot sit idle and wait for the technology to be in place. We are working closely with our partners to drive change, move boundaries while we at the same time utilise the best solutions available already today,” said Mr Skjeldam.

To begin the green upgrade program immediately as Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express returns all seven ships to operation this European summer, certified biofuel will be introduced across the fleet.

Hurtigruten Expeditions will also start trials with biofuel on selected ships and selected itineraries in 2021.

Green pioneers


Damian Perry, Managing Director of Hurtigruten Asia Pacific, said the green upgrades of the Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express ships were the latest in a series of large-scale investment in sustainability and green technology across the Hurtigruten Group.

“In addition to launching the world’s first battery-hybrid-powered cruise ships, MS Roald Amundsen, and MS Fridtjof Nansen, Hurtigruten Expeditions is transforming MS Finnmarken. The ship will be a battery-hybrid powered expedition cruise ship renamed to MS Otto Sverdrup, with large battery packs and advanced green technology,” Mr Perry said. 

In 2018, Hurtigruten Group celebrated its 125th anniversary by being the first cruise line and major travel company to ban single-use plastic.

Across companies and destinations, Hurtigruten Group is working closely with local communities, suppliers and partners in the quest for more sustainable operations.

Click here or visit your local travel agent for more information.