This was our fifth and our last cruise. On Thursday, February 6, 2003 we witnessed something very disturbing. While onboard the Norwegian Wind, travelling from Fanning Island back to the Hawaiian Islands, we saw garbage being dumped from the back of the ship into the ocean, at approximately 11:00 a.m. Some of the items we saw being discarded were whole wine bottles, whole beer bottles, corks, beer and pop cans, plastic plates, plastic utensils, plastic cups, and organic material. We reported the incident to the ship and were shocked to learn that it is completely legal to dump 12 miles from the coast. The ship's captain also informed us that the ship pumps its sewage (raw) into the ocean.
However, the U.S. Coast Guard has informed us that it is illegal to dump plastic material anywhere at sea and they, along with the Environmental Protection Agency in Honolulu, are investigating the matter. We were avid cruisers up until the 6th, but we now feel, from an ethical standpoint, that we can no longer participate in an industry that has such a lack of concern for the environment. We hope others will follow our lead and boycott the cruise industry. Perhaps then the cruise industry will finally smarten up and protect the commodity that they sell - a beautiful natural environment. Sincerely, Kevin and Valerie Sheppard