Great Lakes Cruise Industry Announces Commitment to Environmentally Conscious Cruising

    Cruise the Great Lakes, a coalition of states and provinces, cruise lines, ports, convention and visitor bureaus, and others working together to promote cruising on the Great Lakes, have signed a pledge committing to promoting four environmentally conscious cruising and destination stewardship efforts starting with the 2022 cruising season.

    The four areas of focus:

    1. Destination Stewardship – 3 commitments
    2. Air Emissions & Carbon Reduction – 9 commitments
    3. Wastewater – 2 commitments
    4. Recycling – 5 commitments

    Read the full pledge here:

    “Every member of the Cruise the Great Lakes coalition has already been doing its part to preserving the natural beauty of the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River and our port cities, but we felt that signing this pledge would further demonstrate our commitment to being responsible stewards of our beautiful region,” said David Lorenz, Vice President, Travel Michigan, and Chair of the Cruise the Great Lakes board of directors. “We feel this intentional effort will resonate with travelers who prefer environmentally responsible practices.”

    Great Lakes cruises are unique in both experience and impact. Because vessel size is limited by the St. Lawrence Seaway’s lock system, the ships themselves are small and provide a more intimate guest experience. The largest cruise vessels in operation on the Great Lakes can hold a maximum of 400 passengers, with an average size of fewer than 200. Oceangoing cruise ships, by contrast, carry an average of 3000 passengers, or 15 times more than those cruising the Great Lakes.

    Additionally, Great Lakes ships handle waste and emissions responsibly. No unlawful discharge occurs to Great Lakes waters, and solid waste is retained on board until a port of call where it can be handled by local municipal waste providers.

    “In furtherance of our commitment to responsible environmental stewardship, the Port of Detroit has proudly signed onto the CTGL Sustainability Pledge,” Mark Schrupp, Executive Director, Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority, said . Wherever possible, we will take steps through greener investment, policy, and practices that seek to limit environmental impacts. In turn, we’ll help protect our Great Lakes for commerce, for tourism, and for the people of metro Detroit whom we serve. We look forward to the return of cruise passengers to the Motor City in 2022.”