#MarineScience - Marine Minister Michael Creed fficially opened Ireland's first sea science gallery at Galway City Museum yesterday (Thursday 18 May).
‘Sea Science - the Wild Atlantic’ is Ireland’s first marine science exhibition to have audio and visual displays accessible in both English and as Gaeilge.
The interactive exhibition spans a variety of topics including the nature of how tides operate, multi-beam mapping, deep sea exploration and marine life along the seashore, using a combination of digital interactive touch screens, hands-on-exhibits, holograms and high-definition video footage.
“I’m delighted to officially open Ireland’s first marine science gallery at Galway City Museum, an exhibition that both strengthens our maritime identity and raises awareness about our oceans,” said Minister Creed.
“For an island nation like Ireland, the sea has particular importance to our history and culture, as well as supporting a diverse marine economy. Our ocean is a valuable source of food, a gateway for shipping and means of transport, as well as supporting diverse ecosystems. For many of Ireland’s coastal communities, our ocean also offers tourism and leisure opportunities which contribute to our health and wellbeing.
“Our ocean is indeed a vital resource, and it is imperative to cultivate an interest in our oceans from a young age.”
Dr Peter Heffernan CEO of the Marine Institute said, "Ireland has a rich maritime heritage, from a seafaring history to researching and preserving our marine environment. Our ocean is a national asset and a key aspect of Ireland’s marine plan, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, is to ensure our marine resource generates social, cultural and economic benefits for all our citizens.
Marine Institute chief executive Dr Peter Heffernan added: “To realise Ireland’s marine potential, it’s incredibly important to have an ocean literate society – a population that has a strong understanding of the marine environment and how it impacts our everyday lives.
“To understand the value of our oceans, citizens need to engage with the marine environment from a young age. This exhibition provides a stimulating learning environment for children to discover the mysteries and science of our oceans, and to also inspire our next generation of marine entrepreneurs, explorers and scientists.”
The opening of ‘Sea Science - the Wild Atlantic’ coincides with the launch of SeaFest 2017, Ireland’s national maritime festival, which runs from Friday 30 June to Sunday 2 July.
Volunteers are still wanted for the three-day event, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.