Carnival Cruise line ordered to pay $20M for environmental violations

Carnival Cruise line ordered to pay $20M for environmental violations
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Cruise line company Carnival Corporation and its subsidiary Princess cruise line were hit with a $20 million penalty for environmental violations, including dumping plastic waste into the ocean during trips.

The cruise line giant agreed to pay the penalty under U.S. District Judge Patricia Seitz’s terms of the agreement set in court on Monday, according to a release from the Department of Justice.

"You not only work for employees and shareholders. You are a steward of the environment," Seitz told Carnival CEO Arnold Donald at the hearing, NPR reported. "The environment needs to be a core value, and I hope and pray it becomes your daily anthem."

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Carnival Corporation pleaded guilty to six violations of probation, including dumping plastic mixed with food waste.

"I sincerely regret these mistakes. I do take responsibility for the problems we had," Arnold said when accepting the punishment for Carnival. "I'm extremely personally disappointed we have them. I am personally committed to achieve best in class for compliance."

The Hill has reached out to Carnival for comment.

The company was also faulted for sending teams in advance of inspections to fix environmental compliance violations and for negotiating with the U.S. Coast Guard in an attempt to redefine what would constitute a "major non-conformity" of their environmental compliance plan.

The $20 million penalty follows a $40 million fine Princess cruise lines was forced to pay in 2016 for what was called by the Department of Justice at the time as the “largest-ever criminal penalty involving deliberate vessel pollution.”