Alesund and nearby ports working on sustainability
The cruise ports of Alesund, Geirangerfjord, Kristiansund, Molde & Andalsnes and associated tourist boards in More and Romsdal have joined forces to facilitate sustainable cruise tourism.
“On Tuesday 5 October 2021, we invited cruiseline representatives to a digital round table meeting to discuss how we can contribute to reach this goal. The county has welcomed cruiseships for more than 100 years and hope to do so for a 100 more,” said Monica Berstad Maeland from Alesund Cruise Network.
Norway’s new National Tourism Strategy 2030 is focusing on the importance of creating local value with a smaller footprint and, for the first time, is including cruise within general tourism. Representatives from thirteen cruiselines joined representatives from ports and Visit to discuss cooperation in navigating the green transition and developing more sustainable cruise tourism.
“Our goal is to work together with the cruiselines to develop sustainable and environmentally-friendly solutions. The cruise tourism has great ripple effects when it comes to local businesses within transportation, shops, restaurants, museums and much more.
“Our goal is to work together with cruiselines and other stakeholders to come up with creative new concepts for land-based activities and year-round cruise destinations. We will do this by looking into the itineraries and infrastructure, combined with attractions and activities this area can offer,” said Berstad Maeland.
The purpose of the meeting was to start a dialogue, exploring new opportunities to help create a cruise tourism with a small footprint. The feedback from the participants suggests that the initiative was well received.
The ports are already working to facilitate such sustainability, with the development of onshore power supply (OPS), waste management and the introduction of the Environmental Port Index. Alesund is due to have OPS next year. Meanwhile Andalsnes & Molde aims to provide shoreside electricity in Andalsnes by 2023 with a capacity of 12-16 mW. The next step will be to start the process for OPS in the port of Molde.
“The short distances between the ports makes it possible to sail between ports at a slow pace, using less fuel while still ensuring a varied itinerary. Longer port calls, spreading the traffic and taking advantage of the ports’ close proximities to major attractions creates value for local businesses and leads to lower emissions without compromising on quality,” said Berstad Maeland. In a map designed by the group, nautical miles and steaming time are shown between the ports showing a range of 11nm to 64nm and one to ten hours.
“More and Romsdal is the second largest county in Norway in terms of number of cruise calls and it is therefore important that we take an active role when it comes to the further development of the cruise industry in Norway.”
In 2022, 47 calls/36,000 passengers are expected in Kristiansund; 133/310,000 in Molde & Andalsnes; Geirangerfjord 150 and Alesund 263/570,000. Due to environmental national regulations the number of calls in Geirangerfjord is only 150. For Alesund the growth has come in the shoulder season meaning the port has calls year-round.