Ban on single use plastic items

On July 2nd, 1893 Hurtigruten founder Richard With brought the steamer DS Vesteraalen into service along the coast of Norway, establishing a regular sea link for locals and tourists and founding what today is the world’s largest expedition cruise company.

125 years later, July 2nd 2018 will mark another important day in Hurtigruten’s history; the day we banned all single-use plastic.

The birthday was celebrated with parties all over the world, extending from Seattle in the west to Hong Kong in the east, and all along, in ports, destinations, ships and offices, it was without the use of any single use plastic items!

Director of Operations, Vebjørn Andresen, says the company has to be conscious of the environment.

  • We have a lot of business in places that are extra vulnerable. When you have business in Svalbard, you have a special social responsibility, he says.

On Svalbard, Hurtigruten Svalbard has done major changes in our operations. A few examples:

  • Tooth-picks, portion-packs with butter, plastic cutlery and straws are history
  • Plastic bags are replaced with biodegradable bags
  • Plastic water bottles are replaced with glass-bottles or reusable bottles
  • Plastic cups are removed
  • Take-away boxes are replaced with cardboard boxes or better alternatives
  • General reduction in the use of plastic in our kitchens

In numbers this means finding more environmentally friendly alternatives to 80,000 plastic bags for waste, 40,000 plastic vacuum cleaners, 20,000 disposable cups and 10,000 packs of butter per year.

A big thanks to our guests who visit Svalbard for helping us out with the high environmental goals we have set. If you see room for improvement, don’t hesitate to let us know. And if you’re on a tour with us, remember: Take nothing but memories, leave nothing but footprints.

What you should know
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