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French Ambassador Visits Marine Institute To Learn About Its Work & Future Strategies

21st March 2019
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Thomas Furey, INFOMAR; Stephane Crouzat, Ambassador of France in Ireland; Dr Paul Commolly, Marine Institute; and Attaché for Science and Technology Marc Daumas visit the Marine Institute Headquarters in Oranmore on Thursday 14 March Thomas Furey, INFOMAR; Stephane Crouzat, Ambassador of France in Ireland; Dr Paul Commolly, Marine Institute; and Attaché for Science and Technology Marc Daumas visit the Marine Institute Headquarters in Oranmore on Thursday 14 March

The Marine Institute recently welcomed the Ambassador of France in Ireland, Stephane Crouzat, and Attaché for Science and Technology Marc Daumas to its headquarters in Oranmore.

The French delegation received a tour of the Marine Institute facility, and met with staff to gain an insight into the work of the institute and collaborations with French organisations.

Welcoming the delegation to the Marine Institute, Dr Paul Connolly, director of fisheries and advisory services, said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to exchange knowledge and discuss our recent work and research with the ambassador.

“Our collaborations with French scientists and the French institute Ifremer and important relationships which also increase our research capacity.”

The ambassador was greeted by Dr Connolly and Thomas Furey of the INFOMAR programme, and introduced to the broad work of the institute using the various displays in the reception area.

Dr Connolly outlined the work of the institute’s marine science research vessels, and the design for a new state-of-the-art marine research vessel for Ireland which is now under way.

The ambassador also viewed a series of artworks and watercolour illustrations produced as part of BlueFish marine science project, which links art and science to demystify the concept of climate change in coastal communities.

Furey demonstrated how the INFOMAR Augmented Reality Sandbox is used to explain the concept of seabed mapping to children and adults at public events.

Experts from the Marine Institute shared their involvement in recent research and projects through a number of presentations.

Jennifer Doyle explained how underwater TV surveys assess nephrops stocks and how the Marine Institute has transferred this technology to the Bay of Biscay, by working closely with the French Institute Ifremer.

Furey discussed INFOMAR’s work and links with several French organisations, Guillaume Ball outlined his current research on tuna, and Yves Reecht explained how mobile phone technology was being used to build a system to map the fishing activity of small inshore vessels.

Aodhán Fitzgerald provided an overview on the Marine Institute’s role as co-ordinators of EuroFleetsPlus, a project which will access to an advanced research fleet and involve a number of French partners.

Dr Margaret Rae also presented the work undertaken by the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance (AORA) as part of the transatlantic alliance between the USA, Canada and the European Union.

The French delegation also received an overview of Ireland’s Integrated marine plan Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, and the Marine Institute’s Strategic Plan 2018 – 2022 Building Ocean Knowledge, Delivering Ocean Services.

A key building block in developing the institute’s digital capability as part of this strategic plan was achieved last month when it became one of the first 10 national data centres worldwide to receive the international accreditation of its Data Management Quality Management Framework by the (UNESCO) International Oceanographic Commission's IODE programme.

The IODE (International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange) programme designates national oceanographic data centres and has a central co-ordinating role internationally.

New digital capabilities are critical to integrated marine service delivery including areas such as oceanographic services, food safety, fisheries and marine management programmes, the institute says, adding that the IODE accreditation “will underpin the quality of these services and underlines the Marine Institute's commitment to high-quality services”.

These services include the institute’s Digital Ocean programme which is developing new digital capabilities in data management, integration, analytics and modelling to contribute to making high-quality marine data and information more readily available to support service delivery to Government, the national marine research and innovation community, the public and to facilitate international collaboration.

Published in Marine Science
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Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

At A Glance – Figaro Race

  • It starts in June or July from a French port.
  • The race is split into four stages varying from year to year, from the length of the French coast and making up a total of around 1,500 to 2,000 nautical miles (1,700 to 2,300 mi; 2,800 to 3,700 km) on average.
  • Over the years the race has lasted between 10 and 13 days at sea.
  • The competitor is alone in the boat, participation is mixed.
  • Since 1990, all boats are of one design.

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