FCCA Cruise Summit Showcases Importance of Education and Environment Resilience

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PORT ST. MAARTEN – A delegation from Port St. Maarten Group (PSG) attended the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Cruise Summit that took place in San Juan, Puerto Rico from June 1-3.

An agenda point for PSG was to look at the value the Port brings to the industry and strategic opportunities for the long-term resilience of cruise tourism development for the destination.

Besides discussing the Port marque value, two additional points of discussion were at the forefront of the three-day summit, education (maritime), and the cruise industry’s impact on the environment.

Port St. Maarten CEO Gumbs said investing in maritime education initiatives has been identified as key to ensuring the success of communities in the maritime industry.

PSG has already subscribed to supporting the Kidz At Sea Foundation. The organization was founded in 2012 with support of the Marine Trades Association and is dedicated to providing young people with access to the opportunities that exist within St. Maarten’s marine industry, water sports, and other water-based activities.

The educational projects and programs of the Kidz At Sea Foundation are geared towards teaching those who participate in life skills, teamwork, communication, accountability, and self-reliance.

Port St. Maarten Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alexander Gumbs said on Thursday that the FCCA Cruise Summit was informative and gave additional opportunities for the destination to touch base with cruise partners and other stakeholders.

“On Saturday June 4, Port St. Maarten celebrated its 58th anniversary. It was a time for us as port officials to reflect on the points brought forward at the end of the FCCA Cruise Summit where Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) were discussed.

“Maritime related education is essential to the development of our human resources and fosters the further expansion of our marine industry, taking cargo, cruise, yachting and ferry operations into consideration,” PSG CEO Gumbs said on Thursday.

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), considered as the leading voice of the global cruise community, in its 2022 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook report, underscores the value of the cruise tourism to local communities and national economies around the world, and charts the industry’s continued progress towards achieving carbon neutrality.

The cruise industry is leading the way in environmental sustainability and destination stewardship. Cruise lines are making considerable investments in new technologies and new ships and pursuing the goal of net carbon neutral cruising by 2050.

The Fleet of the Future, by 2027, CLIA ocean-going cruise line member fleet will reflect significant advancements in the cruise industry’s pursuit of a cleaner, more efficient future of 26 LNG-powered cruise ships; 81 per cent of global capacity will be fitted with Advanced Wastewater Treatment Systems; and 174 cruise ships will have shoreside power connectivity.