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Holland America receives top Coast Guard award

U.S. Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Robert Papp presented the gold 2012 Rear Admiral William M. Benkert Environmental Protection Award to Michael Inman, director, system management and program development, Safety and Environmental Management Systems for Holland America Line.

Holland America received the U.S. Coast Guard’s highest award in recognition of the line’s environmental leadership and for successfully achieving several environmental objectives that exceed regulations.

U.S. Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Robert Papp presented the 2012 gold Rear Admiral William M. Benkert Environmental Protection Award to Michael Inman, director, system management and program development, Safety and Environmental Management Systems for Holland America Line. The company first received the biennial award in 2010.

A panel of experts chooses the winner based on a thorough review of the line’s comprehensive approach to environmental stewardship. “At Holland America Line we recognize that environmental stewardship is a daily responsibility, and we are continually seeking ways to enhance and extend our initiatives,” said Stein Kruse, president and CEO of Holland America. “We are honored that the U.S. Coast Guard acknowledged our efforts with a second Benkert Award.”

Holland America has long been a leader in environmental initiatives with its comprehensive approach to managing impacts and reducing its overall carbon footprint. In 2011, the line implemented a sustainable seafood program that employs environmentally responsible purchasing practices to ensure that only sustainable seafood is used on all Holland America Line ships.

Holland America’s Environmental Management System was certified in 2006 and recertified in 2009. The company works to conserve fuel and water, employs the latest technologies for wastewater and oily bilge water treatment, and uses innovative strategies to reduce and manage its solid waste stream. The cruise line also is an industry leader in exploring new environmental initiatives such as a whale conservation and protection program and using shore power in a growing number of ports.

The William M. Benkert Award is the premier marine environmental protection award presented by the Coast Guard to members of the marine industry. The biennial award was created to recognize outstanding achievements in marine environmental protection that go beyond mere compliance with industrial and regulatory standards.

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