FERRY company Brittany Ferries has just placed an order for a new vessel that will be its largest, cleanest and most environmentally-friendly ship to date.
The €270million cruise-ferry will be powered by Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) which emits 25% less carbon dioxide than traditional oil engines – and, as it burns with a clean flame and no smoke, emits no dust, soot or sulphur and is low in nitrogen oxide emissions.
To be built by STX France in Saint-Nazaire, she will enter service in late spring 2017 and will operate on the longer routes between the UK and Spain – allowing the company’s present flagship, the Pont-Aven, to move to the Portsmouth-Saint-Malo route.
The Pont-Aven can carry up to 2,400 passengers and 650 cars and is already used on the Portsmouth-Roscoff route. She was launched in 2004.
Brittany Ferries’ new flagship will have an indoor swimming pool, two cinemas, three bars, restaurants, a quiet reading lounge, an observation area and a sophisticated spa treatment room with panoramic views.
In all, there will be 675 cabins - including 12 Commodore Suites, each with its own balcony - 51 Deluxe cabins and 15 wheelchair-accessible cabins. It will also have pet kennels and 30 pet-friendly cabins.
Mike Bevens, Brittany Ferries commercial director said: “This represents a huge investment which will benefit not simply our customers but the environment as well.”
French Industry Minister Arnaud Montebourg and Transport Minister Frédéric Cuvillier both greeted the announcement, which they said amounted to 2.6million hours of work and 500 jobs for three years.
The 52,500-tonne, 210-metre vessel will be the first ferry in the world to use technology allowing its LNG fuel to be stored at close to atmospheric rather than high pressure and the ministers noted that the order would allow STX to develop its own expertise in this new industrial technology.