ALASKA, USA - JULY 25, 2013: Unidentified tourists
Cruise ship passengers looking at the Margerie Glacier at Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve in Alaska. (File/Getty)
  • The US state of Florida announced earlier in April that it would be suing the federal Centres for Disease Control (CDC) to bring cruises back "immediately."
  • Now, Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy says that state will be joining Florida's lawsuit against the CDC.
  • Alaska lost $3 billion when the CDC canceled the 2020 cruising season due to COVID-19, according to Dunleavy.
  • Cruise ships remain banned in South Africa.
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Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy says that state will be joining Florida in suing the America's federal Centres for Disease Control and Prevention to unban cruise ships.

The US CDC has maintained its pause on the cruise industry - via its no-sail order and recently updated Conditional Sailing Order (COS)- since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic when cruise ships around the world initially became inundated with coronavirus outbreaks.

South Africa has similarly consistently kept cruise ships from calling at any local port, since the first hard lockdown was instituted.

See also | Giant cruise ship operator MSC has given up on South Africa until at least November

In an effort to "fight back" against the American halt on cruising, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced earlier this month that the state would be suing the CDC to bring cruise ships back "immediately." Now, Alaska will be joining this cause in an effort to push the CDC to either remove or revise its order.

Alaska has lost $3 billion due to the 2020 cruise halt, and is projected to continue this loss as the 2021 cruising season remains in limbo, Dunleavy said in a news release.

"Alaskan families and small businesses need fast action to protect their ability to work and provide for their families," Dunleavy said."We deserve the chance to have tourism and jobs."

According to the news release, the CDC doesn't have the authority to continue this "job-killing" pause, and its COS hasn't acknowledged that cruise ships have already been operating successfully outside of the US. The release also noted Alaska's high vaccination and "low" hospitalisation rates.

"Through this lawsuit, Alaska seeks to protect its citizens and its interests by forcing the CDC to act within the limited authority Congress granted it," Treg Taylor, Alaska's attorney general, said in the news release. "CDC simply does not have the authority to arbitrarily shut down an entire industry."

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