Q&A: filming of methane slips on board the MSC World Europa

August 8, 2023

T&E embarked on the cruise ship MSC World Europa in June 2023 to film potential methane slip emanating from the ship’s funnels.

We have put together a Q&A to answer some of the questions that have been raised following the publication by Bloomberg on July 31st, 2023, of the article “The invisible climate impact of a cruise ship” linked to this investigation.

All ships that use an internal combustion engine with LNG let more or less methane escape into the air depending on the engine type. This includes the five Wartsila 4-stroke 14V46DF engines the MSC World Europa is equipped with. The IMO estimates that this type of four-stroke, low pressure engine lets on average 3.5% of methane escape into the air. The European Union, on the other hand, estimates that this type of engine lets on average 3.1% methane escape. Several studies have measured CO2 and methane emissions on LNG-powered ships at sea. They estimate that the amount of methane that slips into the air varies between 2.2% to 8% with a significant variability linked to the load.

Read the briefing to learn more about the technical tools that were used to recording the methane slips and how did we determine the accuracy of the images.

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