Port of Seattle Hastens Implementation of Shore Power Mandate for Cruise Ships

The Port of Seattle has set a precedent by being the first US port to require that all cruise vessels stationed in Seattle be equipped with shore power capabilities and to make use of shore power, as reported in a press release.

This directive, approved by the Port of Seattle Commission today, will be implemented in the 2026 cruise season, accelerating the previous target from 2030 to 2027.

“By mandating the use of shore power for all homeported cruise ships through our commercial agreements, the Port continues to foster economic growth while reducing its impact on the environment and local communities,” explained Port of Seattle Commissioner Fred Felleman, the proponent of the directive. “This resolution enhances the Port’s 2030 objective for universal shore power usage to a mandatory action in 2027, which is achievable thanks to substantial investments by both the cruise industry and the Port in ships and shore facilities. This advancement should also attract environmentally conscious travelers cruising to Alaska,” he added.

“I am honored to co-sponsor this directive, which emphasizes our Commission’s unwavering commitment to promoting shore power—a vital approach to cut emissions in the maritime sector,” voiced by Port of Seattle Commission President Hamdi Mohamed. “With our ongoing investments in shore power facilities, it is essential that homeported ships utilize this feature while docked,” he continued, outlining the policy’s strong stance on sustainability accountability and management.

The electrification of Pier 66 is nearing completion by the Port, with plans to connect cruise ships to shore power there by this summer. This development will equip all three Seattle cruise terminals with shore power, fulfilling the Northwest Ports Clean Air Strategy to electrify all cruise terminals by 2030, achieving it six years ahead of schedule.

This initiative positions Seattle as one of the first cruise ports to offer shore power across multiple berths. The Port of Seattle initially provided shore power in 2004 at two cruise terminals after partnering with Carnival Corporation, making it the first North American homeport with this capability. Continuing to leverage these investments, Carnival and other cruise lines ensure that 66% of cruise calls are capable of utilizing shore power.

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