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Sustainability & Global Impact

With AmaWaterways

As we sail along storied waterways and immerse ourselves in the local culture throughout Europe, Asia and Africa, we connect both to the land and the people who live in each destination we visit. It is therefore of utmost importance to us that we not only support the local communities, but that we also minimize our impact on the environment and the precious natural ecosystems we sail through. Here are a few of the ways we are accomplishing our mission of making a positive impact on the world.

From the design of our ships to the green measures we’ve taken on board and in our shoreside offices, AmaWaterways continues to innovate and explore new ways we can enhance our efforts in sustainable tourism.

In fact, 20 of our ships in Europe have earned the prestigious Green Award certification for their industry-leading safety, quality and environmental performance – including our most innovative ship to date, the AmaMagna.

Green Award Certification

In early 2020, our award-winning AmaKristina became the first river cruise ship in the industry to be honored with prestigious Green Award* certification for industry-leading safety, quality and environmental performance. Soon after, 19 additional ships in our European fleet were also recognized with Green Award certification. To earn this award, our river cruise ships were evaluated on the environmental impact of our engines, fuel consumption, waste and maintenance, pollution prevention and more. Many ports, such as the Port of Amsterdam, offer substantial benefits to certified ships to promote safer, cleaner inland navigation and to advocate for an integrated approach for European inland waterways.

* Launched in 1994, the Green Award program is a voluntary independent accreditation process for ocean vessels, inland barges and river cruise ships. To earn the award, ships are evaluated based on standards which are more far-reaching than the statutory requirements and encompass the environmental impact of its engines, fuel consumption, waste and maintenance, pollution prevention and more.

Environmentally-Friendly Ship Design

With the "Godfather of River Cruising," our Co-Founder and President Rudi Schreiner at the helm, our river cruise fleet has been beautifully and thoughtfully designed with eco-friendly elements. These include energy-saving LED lights, special insulated windows that reduce energy needs for heating and cooling, power locks to plug into a port’s power supply instead of running generators, solar heating systems, water treatment plants that use a membrane technology to provide microfiltration and recycling of all water used on board.

In addition to the elements mentioned above, our award-winning AmaMagna debuted on the Danube River in 2019 with an innovative 10-engine configuration designed to reduce overall fuel consumption by up to 20% depending on river conditions. Further, the ship’s Sun Deck features a sustainable herb garden. Biodegradable tetra-pak water containers are also distributed on board to guests to replace plastic water bottles during our included shore excursions.

Meet the AmaMagna

Zambezi Queen

Guests sailing Africa’s Chobe River on our Africa Safaris & Wildlife River Cruises do so aboard the magnificent Zambezi Queen. Responsibility towards the environment forms the foundation upon which the Zambezi Queen was built.

  • A water jet propulsion system replaces the conventional propeller system, causing no damage to the riverbed.
  • Only the latest fuel efficient and low emission generators are run during daylight hours, with the boat operating on battery power through the night.
  • Hot water is provided by a solar heating system.
  • Energy-saving lights throughout.
  • Water-saving taps and showers.
  • Onboard sewage processing plant.
  • Cleaning detergents and soaps are biodegradable.
  • Five-stage water purification plant, using river water in showers and tap.

A Greener Onboard Experience

We continue to evaluate and implement new measures across the fleet to minimize our impact on the environment. In our efforts to reduce overall plastic consumption on board, we have replaced plastic straws with paper ones, added glass water bottles in all staterooms and continue to test the use of tetra-pak water containers for our excursions across the fleet. For 2021, we will continue to look for ways to reduce single-use plastics onboard. Introduced in 2021, our new culinary action stations and our two-person variety appetizer plates have enhanced our service levels and the choice and freshness of our breakfast and lunch menus while also reducing food waste.

Sustainability Shoreside

We are proud to partner with Quietvox, a green company that provides the personal audio devices guests take with them on our included shore excursions. From packaging earphones in biodegradable rice paper bags to using rechargeable batteries, Quietvox is committed to reducing its environmental impact.

While a large part of our focus is in lessening our environmental impact on the world’s rivers, we have also adopted a number of eco-friendly measures within our shoreside offices. This includes the use of biodegradable paper plates, cups and utensils; paper recycling; and the encouraged use of reusable water bottles.

Learn more about our mission as well as our story, and start planning your river cruise today.