The Government wants to ban polluting cruise ships

GEIRANGERGEIRANGER.Photo: Paul Kleiven / Scanpix

The Government wants to ban polluting cruise ships from Norwegian world heritage sites

The government will close Norway’s world heritage fjords to polluting cruise ships. This means that half of the ships could be refused entry from 2019 onward.


Climate and Environment Minister, Vidar Helgesen of Høyre (H), told NRK news that the World Heritage Sites are a great resource for Norway and that we must protect them.

Helgesen has asked the Norwegian Maritime Directorate to draw up a regulatory framework for ship traffic in the fjords to reduce the release of nitrogen oxide, sulfur and prohibit sewerage emanating from the cruise ships.

50% of current visting cruise ships could be shut out, according to a survey from the Climate and Environment Ministry.

‘Many cruise ships don’t reach modern environmental requirements, and this means that some shipping companies will have to replace the ships if they want to enter Norwegian fjords,’ said Helgesen to NRK news.

The Norwegian Maritime Directorate have been told to establish the regulatory framework by the end of 2018, which means possibly far fewer cruise tourists in ‘World Heritage’ registered mountains in the summer of 2019.

Risks losing world heritage status

Climate specialists, the Bellona Foundation, are positive to the government’s proposed measures, and believe it’s time for the cruise ships to be put in their place. Senior counselor, Jan Kjetil Paulsen. of Bellona, told NRK news that he believes Norway must make demands of those who visit us.

‘We may risk losing world heritage status, and we would also lose the business base in these areas’ said Paulsen.


© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today