Gage Sholl, a staff member at Threshold Services in Kodiak, processes spent fluorescent bulbs through the Bulb Eater® the Alaska Cruise Association donated to the community. Threshold operates a community recycling facility that accepts various recyclables and provides a hands-on work place for individuals living with disabilities to learn basic vocational skills.

The commander of the U.S. Coast Guard?s 17th District has commended the nine member lines of the Alaska Cruise Association (ACA) and North West CruiseShip Association (NWCA) for reaching its annual goal “of preventing accidents that may result in injuries to personnel and damage to the environment and property.”

In a letter, Rear Admiral A.E. Brooks reported that there were no personnel injuries, no significant marine causalities and only a few minor oil spills during the 2008 season.

“This is an especially noteworthy accomplishment when you consider that cruise ships plying Alaskan waters conducted over 2,300 port calls and transported approximately one million passengers,” the admiral wrote. “The success of this season is directly attributable to the professionalism, knowledge and team work of the … Association(s) and its members. Our valuable partnership, which relies on open communication with a clear focus on safety and prevention, also helps to ensure the safety of cruise ship passengers and crew members while protecting the Alaskan environment.”

“Safety is our number one priority and we appreciate the close cooperation with the Coast Guard and lessons we have learned,” said John Binkley, ACA’s President.

Twenty-eight ACA ships called on Alaska this season. The cruise industry supports 14,500 full-time jobs in Alaska and annually adds $1.35 billion dollars to the state’s economy.

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