Activists Seeking to Place Limits and Bans on Cruise Ships in Juneau, Alaska

On April 12, 2021, three ballot initiatives were submitted in Juneau in an attempt to place limits and to some extent a ban on cruise ship visits in the popular Alaskan port. Activists are seeking to impose a limit on the time of day cruise ships with 250 or more passengers can be docked or anchored, and an outright ban these vessels on Saturday. Additionally, the group is seeking to ban ships based on gross tonnage.

Submitted Juneau, Alaska Ballot Initiatives

  • Limit cruise ships with 250 or more passengers to the hours of 7 AM to 7 PM
  • Ban all cruise ships with more than 250 passengers on Saturdays
  • Ban all cruise ships larger than 100,000 gross tonnage after January 1, 2026.

This is just the beginning of the efforts spearheaded by Juneau’s Karla Hart, co-founder of the Global Cruise Activist Network, to get these ballot initiatives on the ballots during Juneau’s next municipal election on October 5, 2021. Beginning May 3rd, supporters will begin seeking the nearly 3,000 signatures required for each initiatives to make it onto the ballot.

Read more:

The Disney Wonder has been calling on Juneau since 2011 during the summer Alaskan sailings and would be subject to two thirds of the potential charter amendments. The good news, is the Disney Wonder comes in well under the proposed ban of vessels larger than 100,000 gross tons which at the most would just require Disney Cruise Line to adjust her arrival and departure times as the Disney Wonder typically visits Juneau on Fridays.

Juneau Disney Wonder

We will continue to monitor these ballot initiatives in Juneau and provide updates as they become available.

11 Replies to “Activists Seeking to Place Limits and Bans on Cruise Ships in Juneau, Alaska”

  1. Keith

    We went on a DCL cruise to Alaska….they could have skipped Juneau for all I care. It was too “Touristy” for us. Skagway was amazing. I bet there are other ports in Alaska that will gladly accept DCL and other cruise ships.

  2. Karla Hart

    Keith, You make our point for us. Thank you. Juneau didn’t used to be too “touristy.”

    PS Skagway city leaders are also discussing cruise ship limits.

  3. Xavier

    Usefull information for us : the Magic class is about 84.000 GT and 130.000 for the Dream class ships.(according to Wikipedia)

    So Alaskan cruises of the Wonder seems safe.

    But once again, i wish that Disney had choosed that one of the 3 future ships to be smaller & cleaner.
    That way it could go to many interesting places that start to ban mega ships…

  4. Jo

    Xavier, I agree. I love the Magic class. The cabins are larger, the pools are larger and you can get around the ship very easily and get into different ports of call. Surprised DCL did not survey their clients about the matter.

  5. James

    I’m sure Disney will keep retrofitting the Wonder to keep her clean and in service for years to come. The problem with using a LNG ship for going into smaller ports is the availability of fuel. Diesel type fuel is available at almost every dock that cruise ships can go to. Dock side LNG is more rare and will be decades if ever for some ports.

  6. Xavier

    Couldn’t agree more Jo. ^^

    I started with Fantasy, Magic and then Dream on November 2019 just before the world went crazy. 😉
    Although the Dream class have a few more options, I was much more at ease with the Magic.

    I acknowledge I am old school as I want my cruise ship to look and feel like a ship and not a huge moving resort… For example I fell in love with the navigator veranda cabin on Magic.

    And you’re right with the cabins : the extra square foot in Magic Class are a real plus !

  7. Kate

    Sometimes it seems that environmental activists won’t be happy unless we all spend our vacations siting quietly in our backyards under a tree not interacting with anything in a way that could be construed as having a negative impact. But then how will we be able to appreciate the wonders a place like Alaska has to offer? Seeing a state like this by water is ideal for tourists and there is a significant economic contribution from them as well. It seems from many sources Scott quotes that Disney is a fair steward from an environmental standpoint.

  8. Karla Hart

    Kate, We are asking for ships to give us from 7pm to 7am and Saturdays to enjoy summer in our town without the congestion, noise, wakes, displacement, and general overtourism that comes from large cruise ships. That leaves the cruise industry from 7am to 7pm and Sunday through Friday to call on Juneau. Supporters of this are not all environmentalists. When the impacts of cruise ship tourism mean helicopter noise in your house from 8am to 8pm for six months, confused and dangerous for small boat wakes in a harbor and area distant from the cruise ships that would be mostly calm, dirty diesel buses by the dozens, …. you too might be asking for a few hours out of each week for calm and tranquility.

  9. Philip

    I really hate it when people interrupt my indignation with a reasonable request to balance cruising with their desire to enjoy their homes.

  10. Susan E. Schrader

    As a 30 yr. resident of Juneau, I can report that many Juneau residents are overwhelmed by the 1.2 million cruise ship passengers that visit our town of 31,000 on foreign-flagged vessels each season. We can’t shop in our local businesses downtown because the sidewalks are jammed; we avoid our favorite local trails because of commercial guided hikes; we don’t visit our Mendenhall Glacier due to hordes of tourists and scores of diesel-powered buses. On Tuesdays each week in 2019, our small town received 23,000 passengers. It’s long past time for reasonable limits. You would likely feel the same if you lived here! The season gets longer, the ships get bigger, the crowds on the sidewalks swell, the helicopter noise is deafening. Over-tourism at its worst. A few reasonable limits and I may smile again at tourists and help them read their maps as I did 20 years ago.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.