Cruise Ship Lands in Santa Barbara

By Joe DeLise

The Majestic Princess cruise ship arrived in Santa Barbara from San Francisco this morning.

By Ian S.

The breakwater at sunrise.


Written by jdelise

What do you think?


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  1. nah, we have plenty of tourists, the problem is, our downtown retail sector has disappeared. cruise ships are floating petri dishes and the ships themselves dump loads of waste into the harbor (grey and black), and the ships disrupt a lot of already ongoing activities, then it also ties up the sea landing and puts cranky ship security guards that like to be wanna be tough guys. it’s really lame honestly. we don’t make that much in retail from them. the CITY makes about half a million from the contract PER ship….that is where the money is. just the ship paying the city to pollute the harbor.

  2. Complain complain complain!!! They’re here for one day and only a few hours …get over it. I’m sure the downtown and water front bars and restaurants are enjoying the uptick in lunch crowds for the day…we know they need it.

  3. Really? The people on these ships are on a budget, average age 70, they are not big spenders,big spenders have their own boats….the people on budgets eat and drink on the ships, take a day pack with food and drink…the only thing they provide is the spread of disease and the dumping of pharmaceuticals into our local ocean through waste water dumping. Santa Barbara is getting a bad deal.

  4. SUN – none of what you said is true. These coastal cruises from SF are expensive, they’re not your cheap 3 day Ensenada cruises. I highly doubt the average age is 70 and so what if it is? That does nothing for your “argument.” If they go on shore, they spend on shore. You don’t buy food on the ship to take with you. It’s not worth it. Finally, none of the “Waste water” (including pharmaceuticals) is dumped in our coastal water. The ships don’t sit off our coast dumping trash and sewage into our fisheries. It’s the California coast. Do you really think that would be allowed? Again. Nothing you say is true, just anger and myths.

  5. Cruise Ship Pollution vs Cars
    Would you be shocked to know that each day, cruises around the world emit the equivalent pollution of a million cars? The vast majority of cruise ships run on dirty, heavy fuel. Their toxic emissions are expensive to abate, which results in extreme amounts of particulate matter filling the air.
    Just one mid-sized cruise ship can use 150 tons of fuel daily. Why so much fuel? The engines on cruise ships run 24/7 — even if when they’re in ports. While not at sea, the cruise ship still has to be fully operational. The hotel facility must be heated, cooled, and illuminated for guests needs. The spa and restaurants continue to serve guests. And all of this combined takes a whole lot of energy! The energy comes from the ship’s engines — which are forced to produce the same energy that’s required to power a small city.
    Port communities and passengers are stuck taking the brunt of this pollution. The emissions that passengers breath while on a cruise are over 20 times higher than on a busy, polluted roadway.
    Cruise Ship Pollution vs Planes
    Now that we’ve illuminated just how bad cruise ship pollution is, you likely aren’t going to be surprised when we tell you that cruise ship pollution is also worse than flying. Comparing mile to mile, the carbon footprint of a cruise is worse than an airplane. This even factors in the damage from emissions at higher altitude from flying.
    Many people have the false assumption that cruising is greener than flying. While both emit pollution into the atmosphere, cruise ships are far worse. Per passenger, per mile, a cruise emits almost double the carbon dioxide.
    Cruise ship emissions are also harmful to marine environments and its inhabitants. Cruise ships are notorious for utilizing the cheapest fuel on the market. They then use scrubbers to “clean” their smokestacks, and the pollutants are dumped directly into the ocean — warming the seas and poisoning marine wildlife.
    Are Cruise Ships Bad for the Environment?
    As we outlined above, cruises are bad for the environment. There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. We only hit the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the ways that cruises are bad for the environment. They also:
    Dump raw sewage and waste into the ocean
    Increase ocean noise
    Increase pollution in port cities
    Develop damaging ports in diverse, biologically rich locations
    Spread bacteria and viruses
    And more!
    These ships cost a billion dollars or more to build. The cruise industry has deep pockets, yet giant cruise corporations continue to use the cheapest fuel allowed and do nothing to rein in their emissions and pollution.

  6. Facts from” Friends of the Earth”
    How Eco Friendly Are Cruise Ships
    If you’re like two thirds of the travelers across the globe, you want to enjoy the perks of a beautiful vacation while still being conscious of how it impacts the planet. Taking a cruise is appealing for many because of the way they are marketed. From the outside they sound like a glorious vacation; the floating cities have everything you need right at your fingertips. From top-of-the-line restaurants to on-board entertainment, blue seas to spectacular sunset views, they really seem to have it all. But cruises are not eco friendly in the slightest.
    There is no such thing as an eco cruise with these massive ships. What you don’t see on the cruise company’s websites, in their advertisements, and onboard is the hidden truth — cruises are devastating our environment, oceans, sea life, and coastal communities.
    Cruise Ship Pollution Facts
    Cruise ships are floating cities that fill our air and water with pollutants. Here are a few quick cruise ship pollution facts to illustrate just how non-eco friendly this industry truly is.
    Cruise engines run 24/7
    A mid-sized cruise ship can use 150 tons of fuel daily; they burn in gallons per mile, not miles per gallon
    Cruise ships use the cheapest, dirtiest fuel on the market then use scrubbers to clean smokestacks
    Scrubber wastewater is then dumped directly into the oceans
    Raw sewage and graywater can also be dumped into the ocean in most places
    Cruise ships increase ocean noise, disrupting natural behaviors of oceanic wildlife
    They spread bacteria and viruses
    Top 5 Reasons to Never Take a Cruise
    If you were hoping to take a cruise for a vacation, consider these horrible facts about them first.
    1. They Pollute Coastal Communities
    While many people think the added tourism improves the local economy, the majority of the businesses are operated by large corporations instead of local merchants. Cruise lines have devastated local economies — forcing those who once were successful business owners to abandon their own businesses filled with local culture and reinvent themselves to conform to tourist-friendly options.
    If the coastal community is small, imagine the impact thousands of tourists have when flooding the area. When people disembark the giant ships, they fill the local area with their partying spirit — which frequently leads to excess noise and littering. They overcrowd beaches, restaurants, and bars — putting strain and pressure on the local people to keep up with their demand.
    And as the ships stay in port, they are filling the local air with constant pollution.
    2. Excessive Air Pollution
    This likely doesn’t come as a surprise, but cruises are horrible for air quality. Most run on heavy, dirty fossil fuels that have been linked to breathing problems and cancer. And cruise ships must run constantly! The entire ship is typically powered by this fuel day in and day out — whether at sea or port. Restaurants, casinos, TVs, spas, laundry facilities, lighting, and every other part of the ship is reliant on dirty fuel to power it.
    This means that the engines are always emitting sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and carbon dioxide — which is pushing us closer to climate catastrophe.
    3. Dump Human Waste in the Ocean
    Bathroom talk is never pleasant, but it’s something we all do on a regular basis. And our waste — a.k.a. poop — has to go somewhere. On a cruise ship, thousands of passengers and crew members are putting their waste into the ships system. And where does that waste eventually go? You guessed it — right into the seas and oceans. Yuck!
    Now all the majestic marine wildlife is romping about in human feces filled with bacteria. The U.S. does have rules that require raw sewage to be treated first before discharging close to shore, but that isn’t solving the problem. Once the cruise ships are more than three and a half miles from shore, there aren’t any rules and raw sewage can be dumped, damaging our valuable oceanic ecosystem and the creatures that inhabit it.
    4. Destruction of Coral Reefs
    Coral reefs are a vital part of our oceans. They are full of life and protect coasts from storms and floods, and ultimately erosion. Sadly, by 2050 coral reefs will likely be extinct. With cruises waste disposal, traffic, emissions, and damage from anchors and ship collisions there’s not much of a chance for coral to survive.
    It is estimated that in Jamaica only five percent of the reefs surrounding the country have living coral. Off Florida’s coast about 90% of the coral is believed to be dying or already dead.
    A report found that in George Town, Grand Cayman that 300 acres of coral reefs were lost from cruise ship anchors – 300 acres! Another cruise in Cancun, Mexico ran aground and destroyed 80 percent of the coral reef in one of their national parks. Just one cruise did all that damage! This same area sees over 400 cruises annually — leaving the potential for environmental damage extremely high.
    5. They Perpetuate Animal Cruelty
    Cruise ships harm animals in multiple ways. First, as we discussed above the pollution from the toxic chemicals being poured into the ocean can lead to the demise of many species — including orcas. But the dumping doesn’t stop there. Cruise ships have plastic straws and bottles that end up in the ocean which can choke and kill marine wildlife.
    Beyond the pollution from cruise ships, they can injure and kill whales from ship strikes. With the enormous size of cruise ships, large species like whales go unnoticed until impact. Most ship strikes aren’t known about until the dead bodies wash ashore or a cruise ship shows up in port with a dead whale across its bow. Whales have been found with injuries to their skulls including fractures from blunt force trauma, severed dorsal fins, and propeller scars.
    Sadly, these aren’t the only ways that cruises harm animals. Cruise ship excursions promote animal cruelty! Many of the excursions offered by cruise lines promote swimming with dolphins, horse rides, and other wildlife encounters that exploit the animals in the name of tourist entertainment. They are marketed as a “once in a lifetime experience”, but the animals are poorly fed, abused, live in horrific conditions, and are sometimes even drugged to tame their wild instincts. Yet the cruise companies often encourage tourists to engage with these excursions.
    Are There Any Eco Friendly Cruises?
    The easy and obvious answer is no — there are no eco friendly big cruises. Even the most environmentally friendly cruises still perpetuate bad behavior towards the planet, coastal communities, and animals.
    If you want to see the most sustainable cruise lines check out our Cruise Ship Report Card — but don’t be disappointed when you see that none make the grade of being truly sustainable.
    With so many other travel options available, consider other green tourism options instead of a cruise. The planet and all its inhabitants will thank you.

  7. Where Do Cruise Ships Dump Their Waste?
    If you guessed a large portion of it ends up in the oceans, you’d be correct. Sadly, U.S. laws do not do enough to protect our bodies of water. It allows cruise ships to dump waste into the ocean as long as the ships are more than three and a half miles offshore. That means that dirty water from sinks and showers and laundry facilities are discharged into the water. It means that waste from toilets is discharged into the water. And it also means that food waste is also dumped into the ocean.
    Guess who doesn’t have a say in the matter? The oceanic wildlife that call the oceans their home.
    Do Cruise Ships Dump Sewage?
    Yes. To get into a few more specifics than above, the U.S. allows cruise ships to dump treated waste into the ocean if they are within three and a half miles from shore. Beyond that point, there are no restrictions for dumping untreated, raw sewage in U.S. ocean waters. There are a few places like Puget Sound, California, and most of New England where no-dumping zones have been created but everywhere else, sewage can be dumped.

  8. EPA See MAP
    March 28, 2012 Page 1 of 4
    Fact Sheet for the California No Discharge Zone
    Prohibiting Vessel Sewage in all California Marine Waters
    Background: In response to an application from the State of California, the U.S. Environmental
    Protection Agency (EPA) established this regulation under our Clean Water Act Section
    312(f)(4)(A) authorities. EPA estimates the Rule will prohibit the discharge of over 22 million of
    the 25 million gallons of treated sewage that large vessels could otherwise legally discharge
    into California marine waters each year. Even treated sewage can contain pathogens, nutrients
    and other contaminants that affect human and environmental health, and economic
    productivity. Prohibiting large vessel sewage discharges provides additional protection of
    California’s marine water quality.
    California Marine Waters are defined as the territorial sea measured from the baseline as
    determined in accordance with the Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone
    and extending seaward a distance of three miles, and all enclosed bays and estuaries subject to
    tidal influences from the Oregon border (41.999325 North Latitude, 124.212110 West
    Longitude, decimal degrees, NAD 1983) to the Mexican border (32.471231 North Latitude,
    117.137814 West Longitude, decimal degrees, NAD 1983). A map illustrating these waters is
    included with this flyer and can be obtained or viewed at EPA’s website

  9. How can it possibly be legal for ships to come to our town? This needs to stop immediately. Perhaps the city needs to upgrade funding for our harbor patrol in order to defend our coast from any out of town ships. We could have our own navy of sorts. I think an even greater threat to our community comes by rail. While the largest cruise ship can only hold a few thousand people, Amtrak has the capacity to bring outsider to our community by the tens of thousands! Greater still is the threat posed by our freeways and highways which allow vast numbers of people uninhibited access to our community every day. The city of Santa Barbara should immediately expand its police force and construct fortifications to prevent any outsiders from entering by road from rail. It’s bad for people to enter our community, and it’s time we put a stop to it!

  10. Holy Smokes SUN A cruise ship with 1000 people is not even a fart in the ocean. Add up all the biomass in our local ocean and hills eliminating waste everyday. It all ends up in the ocean!!! Find a real biological disaster to fight for.

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