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Latest Environment Stories
Pictured on the Waterford Greenway ahead of the official opening of the longest off-road walking and cycling experience in Ireland is Mayor of Waterford, Cllr Adam Wyse along with Joshua Moran-Davy (10), Leah Moran-Saunders (5) and Reuben Moran-Davy (7) from Passage East, Co Waterford
Coastal Notes
Waterford Greenway, the longest off-road walking and cycling experience in Ireland, is to officially open tomorrow, Saturday (March 25). The eagerly awaited €15 million project stretches 46km from Waterford City to Dungarvan along the former Great Southern and Western Railway…
TULCA Education co-ordinator Joanne McGlynn with Èabha, David, and Lauryn from Cregmore NS as they ‘rediscover’ the Moytirra hydrothermal vents as part of the Build Your Own Unknown art/science project
Marine Science
#MarineScience - Fourth-class pupils from Cregmore National School in Co Galway are creating a marine science and art installation and short film with artist Louise Manifold that re-enacts the 2011 discovery of the Moytirra deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Build Your Own…
The former CIE operated Aran Islands passenger/freight ferry Naomh Eanna languishes in Dublin (Grand Canal Dock Basin). A campaign is underway to return the veteran vessel to her original homeport of Galway.
Historic Boats
#NaomhEanna - The Minister for Transport is being urged to back a campaign to bring Naomh Eanna back to Galway, writes The Connacht Tribune. The ship once carried passengers (and freight) between the city and Aran Islands, before being withdrawn…
UK wave energy technology company, Wavepower Technologies, will create up to 10 advanced engineering research jobs when they establish research and development operations at The Entrepreneur Ship in the MaREI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy in Ringaskiddy, Co. Cork.  Pictured at the announcement are Minister Simon Coveney, T.D., David Rubie-Todd, Co-Founder Wavepower Technologies Ltd and Joanna Murphy, CEO Connect Ireland
Cork Harbour
Leading UK wave energy technology company, will establish research and development operations at The Entrepreneur Ship, which is based at the MaREI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy in Ringaskiddy, Cork Harbour. The new Wavepower site will see the creation…
Making a delivery voyage to Rathin Island this morning is Spirit of Rathlin. The £2.8m newbuild can take up to six vehicles and 140 passengers on the crossing to Ballycastle on the mainland.
Ferry
#NewFerryArrives - Residents of Rathlin Island now have an exciting addition as a brand new car ferry arrived this morning which is to serve the North’s only inhabited island, writes Jehan Ashmore. After a 20 hour delivery voyage from boatbuilders…
BREXIT: On the day that the UK announced the triggering date of Article 50 to begin leaving the EU, Prime Minister Theresa May paid a visit to Wales yesterday to sign the Swansea Bay City Deal in the Liberty Stadium, Swansea. The venue is the home ground for Swansea City F.C. and Ospreys Rugby.
Ports & Shipping
#UKpmSigns - UK and Welsh government ministers were in Swansea to witness Prime Minister Theresa May sign yesterday the Swansea Bay City Deal along with members of the Swansea Bay City Region Board. The deal is the biggest ever investment for south…
Save Our Seafront said an environmental impact statement failed to consider that people walk on the Dún Laoghaire pier to enjoy fresh air and the view of the Dublin mountains, and the effects on their enjoyment if a large cruise ship is obscuring the view and “emitting diesel and sulphur fumes”.
Cruise Liners
#CruiseBerth - An environmental Dublin Bay group’s challenge over an €18 million terminal berth for cruise ships at Dún Laoghaire Harbour writes The Irish Times will be heard later this year at the Commercial Court. The Save Our Seafront (SOS)…
Kingstown 200: Lecture - "The History of Dun Laoghaire Harbour over the past two hundred years 1817- 2017" takes place this Wednesday
Dublin Bay
#Kingstown200 - In this bicentenary year of the founding of Kingstown Harbour, a lecture “The History of Dun Laoghaire Harbour” is to take place this Wednesday, 22 March in the south Dublin Bay town. In what is expected to be…
Pictured (l-r) at Dublin Port are the first Port Perspectives artists commissioned to create public artworks, Cliona Harmey, Sheelagh Broderick, Business to Arts CEO Andrew Hetherington, Dublin Port CEO Eamonn O’Reilly, Alice Butler, Daniel Fitzpatrick, Silvia Loeffler.
Dublin Port
#PortPerspectives - Artists commissioned to create a series of site-specific public artworks were announced by Dublin Port Campany. They were chosen in response to Dublin Port's new programme Port Perspectives and its relationship with the City. New works by Sheelagh…
Galway Hosts Shellfish Safety Conference This May
Marine Science
#Shellfish - Galway will host the 11th International Conference on Molluscan Shellfish Safety (ICMSS 2017) this summer from Sunday 14 to Thursday 18 May. ICMSS 2017 will be hosted by the Marine Institute in association with the Food Safety Authority…
Map of the GESS survey starting later this month
Coastal Notes
#MarineNotice - Marine Notice No 11 of 2017 advises that a geophysical research survey will be undertaken off the South and East Coasts of Ireland for 16 days from Tuesday 28 March. The survey is a collaborative effort by researchers…
Jeanie Johnston has finally returned to her Dublin city-centre Liffey berth at Custom House Quay where is located the EPIC museum on Irish emigration that have organised guided walking tours about the historic port over the St. Patrick's weekend. Behind the tallship is the Samuel Beckett swing bridge (see related report link below) that also referred to the notable construction of 'Capital Dock' (right of Poolbeg stacks on the skyline) that is part of the Strategic Development Zone (SDZ).
Dublin Port
#WalkingTours – Award-winning guide and historian Pat Liddy will present special walking tours of Dublin’s historic docklands and the port as part of the St Patrick's Festival weekend. The tours are organised by EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum at the…
RV Celtic Voyager is assisting with the search operation off Mayo
Marine Science
The Marine Institute ship RV Celtic Voyager is providing specialist support to assist in a major sea search off the county Mayo coast approximately six miles west of Blacksod to locate an Irish Coast Guard helicopter believed to have entered…
Sir David Attenborough and Cammell Laird CEO John Syvret with a model of the newbuild polar research ship currently under construction at the shipyard in Birkenhead, Merseyside
Ports & Shipping
#ExportDrive -UK shipbuilder Cammell Laird that is building polar research vessel Sir David Attenborough, says it plans to unleash an ‘aggressive exports drive’ in 2017 after one of its busiest years for commercial marine work, which saw it land the…
The prototype wave energy device at the Galway Bay Marine and Renewable Energy Test Site
Power From the Sea
An Irish-designed device to generate electricity from ocean wave power is another step closer to breaking into the massive potential on offer in the ocean energy market. Irish company, Sea Power Ltd., has concluded the winter survivability testing programme of…
FERRIES IN ART: In this colour sketch by John Baird are the Rathlin Island ferries Rathlin Express and Canna (soon to be replaced) by a new Arklow built car ferry to serve the six mile crossing on the Sea of Moyle.
Ferry
#FerriesInArt – A beautiful art work depicting the current pair of Rathlin Island serving ferries will be a lovely keepsake for the operator as one of the vessels is soon to be replaced by a newbuild, writes Jehan Ashmore. The…

For all you need on the Marine Environment - covering the latest news and updates on marine science and wildlife, weather and climate, power from the sea and Ireland's coastal regions and communities - the place to be is Afloat.ie.

Coastal Notes

The Coastal Notes category covers a broad range of stories, events and developments that have an impact on Ireland's coastal regions and communities, whose lives and livelihoods are directly linked with the sea and Ireland's coastal waters.

Topics covered in Coastal Notes can be as varied as the rare finding of sea-life creatures, an historic shipwreck with secrets to tell, or even a trawler's net caught hauling much more than just fish.

Other angles focusing the attention of Coastal Notes are Ireland's maritime museums, which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of our nautical heritage, and those who harvest the sea using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety pose an issue, plying their trade along the rugged wild western seaboard.

Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied as the environment they come from, and which shape people's interaction with the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

Marine Wildlife

One of the greatest memories of any day spent boating around the Irish coast is an encounter with Marine Wildlife. It's a thrill for young and old to witness seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales right there in their own habitat. And as boaters fortunate enough to have experienced it will testify, even spotting a distant dorsal fin can be the highlight of any day afloat. Was that a porpoise? Was it a whale? No matter how brief the glimpse, it's a privilege to share the seas with Irish marine wildlife.

Thanks to our location in the North Atlantic, there appears to be no shortage of marine life to observe. From whales to dolphins, seals, sharks and other ocean animals, the Marine Wildlife category documents the most interesting accounts around our shores. And we're keen to receive your observations, your photos, links and video clips, too!

Also valuable is the unique perspective of all those who go afloat, from coastal sailing to sea angling to inshore kayaking to offshore yacht racing, as what they encounter can be of great importance to organisations such as the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG). Thanks to their work we now know we share the seas with dozens of species who also call Ireland home. But as impressive as the list is, the experts believe there are still gaps in our knowledge. Next time you are out on the ocean waves, keep a sharp look out!

Weather

As an island in the North Atlantic, Ireland's fate is decided by Weather more so than many other European countries. When storm-force winds race across the Irish Sea, ferry and shipping services are cut off, disrupting our economy. When swollen waves crash on our shores, communities are flooded and fishermen brace for impact - both to their vessels and to their livelihoods.

Keeping abreast of the weather, therefore, is as important to leisure cruisers and fishing crews alike - for whom a small craft warning can mean the difference between life and death - as it is to the communities lining the coast, where timely weather alerts can help protect homes and lives.

Weather affects us all, and Afloat.ie will keep you informed on the hows and the whys.

Marine Science

Perhaps it's the work of the Irish research vessels RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of Marine Science for the future growth of Ireland's emerging 'blue economy'.

From marine research to development and sustainable management, Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. Whether it's Wavebob ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration, the Marine Science category documents the work of Irish marine scientists and researchers and how they have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

Power From The Sea

The message from the experts is clear: offshore wind and wave energy is the future. And as Ireland looks towards the potential of the renewable energy sector, generating Power From The Sea will become a greater priority in the State's 'blue growth' strategy.

Developments and activities in existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector, and those of the energy exploration industry, point to the future of energy requirements for the whole world, not just in Ireland. And that's not to mention the supplementary industries that sea power projects can support in coastal communities.

Irish ports are already in a good position to capitalise on investments in offshore renewable energy services. And Power From The Sea can even be good for marine wildlife if done properly.

Aside from the green sector, our coastal waters also hold a wealth of oil and gas resources that numerous prospectors are hoping to exploit, even if people in coastal and island areas are as yet unsure of the potential benefits or pitfalls for their communities.

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