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Displaying items by tag: Bundoran

#RNLI - This Sunday 3 August, members of the Kerrigan family, their friends and neighbours, the emergency services and the general public will gather at 10pm for a special function in Dorrian’s Imperial Hotel in Ballyshannon.



Following the annual blessing of the boats ceremony at the Mall Quay at 7pm, the Indians will perform at Dorrian's marking 40 years since Danny Kerrigan’s tragic drowning and subsequently the establishment of a marine rescue service in the area which became Bundoran RNLI.

The band is kindly sponsored by the Kerrigan family of Ballyshannon, whose brother Danny, a signals NCO at Finner Camp, drowned in 1974 at Roguey Cliffs.

Despite Danny's great efforts to stay afloat in heavy seas, there was no emergency boat available in the area and no other boat could get to the scene in time to save him.

As a result of his tragic death, a meeting brought together members of the Defence Forces, Gardaí, Fire Brigade and water safety interests in the area, the result of which was the formation of the Bundoran Rescue Committee.

Completely new to the area of water safety, they sought the advice of water safety interests from Tramore in Co Waterford. Following consultation and an assessment of the local area, it was decided to launch the new service from the West End pier.

Funds were raised in the locality and a second hand 'D' class inflatable boat was purchased from the RNLI. The boat was initially stored in sheds in Bundoran up until the committee, with the support of many local people, built the first rescue boathouse on the pier.

Subsequently the service has saved many lives in Donegal Bay, including the Mountbatten incident off Mullaghmore in 1979. The RNLI took over the running of the service in 1994.

The lifeboat crew today are as they were 40 years ago – volunteers – and rely on the generosity of members of the public and their constant donations in order to keep this lifesaving service operational in Donegal Bay.

Lifeboat operations manager for Bundoran RNLI, Tony McGowan, said: "We are indebted to the Kerrigan family for organising the function and generously donating the proceeds to the lifeboat and we take the opportunity on the night to remember Danny and all of those who have been lost at sea in the area."

The Kerrigan family added: "While it was devastating to lose Danny, it was good to see a lifeboat service formed as a result and our thanks go to the present lifeboat crew for all their great work.”


Tickets for the night are available on the door at €15 or in advance from the Kerrigan family, McNern Barbers in Ballyshannon or BMG Hardware in Bundoran.
 


A history in words and pictures of Bundoran Lifeboat Station is available on the station’s Facebook page.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Last night (17 July) the volunteer crew of the Bundoran RNLI lifeboat were paged by Malin Head Coast Guard to the aid of six teenagers who had been cut off by the tide at the West End of the Co Donegal town.

Bundoran's lifeboat William Henry Liddington launched just after 8.30pm with four crew on board and were on the scene within two minutes to find the group, who had climbed down to the water’s edge but were unable to make their way back and became trapped by the tide.

The six, none of whom were injured, were helped on board by the lifeboat crew and brought safely back to the station, where they thanked the crew.

Helming the lifeboat on the callout was Dessie Daly, who said: "This was another callout that had a happy ending.

"We thank the member of the public who made the initial emergency call and remind anyone who sees anyone in danger on the coast to call 999 or 112 and don’t assume that somebody else has done it."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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#Surfing - Organisers of the 2014 Sea Sessions Surf and Music Festival have just announced details of their programme for 27-29 June.

Joining a number of top music acts will be some of the best competitors on the international circuit for Ireland’s 'biggest beach party of the year', which proved a big draw to the Donegal surfing hotspot last year.

The Sea Sessions Expression Session is returning in 2014 with the cream of European performance surfing taking on the best in Ireland.

The event format as usual is 'best move/air' and is organised in a way to allow the surfers to express themselves and push their performance.

“It is a really spectator-friendly format”, said organiser Pete Craig. “Most surf events are quote technical and not really that engaging for non-surfers. This unique format allows for and encourages explosive surfing that everyone can get.”

The competitors will hail from places such as France, Spain, Portugal, the Caribbean, the UK and Ireland.

William Alotti (Saint Martin) is returning to defend his title and is an early favourite. Toby Donachie (UK), who was one of the standout performers last year with some huge boosts, is also returning to challenge Alotti for a total prize pot of €3000.

Noah Lane (AUS) was the dark horse of the event last year, and after having settled in Bundoran, he may have some local knowledge that could aid him this year.

New for 2014 is the Malin Waters Fish Challenge, which will see a selection of local surfers and traveling pros attack the waves in some old-school shapes that have been selected for the event.

On the music side, top international talent will be joining the crème de la crème of Irish acts this year at Sea Sessions with Kelis, The Strypes and The Dandy Warhols all set to perform in Bundoran.

The full music line-up and festive activities can be found at www.SeaSessions.com.

Published in Maritime Festivals

#WaterSafety - The crew of Bundoran RNLI's lifeboat, together with local fishermen and members of Irish Water Safety, recently welcomed a group of students from Lucan, Co Dublin who created a new school’s guide to water safety in Ireland’s rivers, lakes and seas.

The group of students from St Joseph’s College in Lucan are participating in the 2014 Young Social Innovators programme and were tasked with picking an issue of concern in their local area and to take action to change it for the better.

They decided to tackle the ongoing problem of drowning, particularly after the tragic summer last year when so many young people lost their lives needlessly during the hot spell.

Their vision for the information pack is to “think before you splash” – encouraging young people to become more involved in water activities and to increase their awareness of the water.

The pack consists of a lesson plan for teachers as well as a local ecology & water safety survey, 10 water safety rules and more.

Speaking during the visit, Bundoran RNLI crewmember Killian O’Kelly said: "It’s heartening for us who volunteer to save lives at sea to see this initiative being undertaken so enthusiastically by this group of students – they are to be commended for such an excellent piece of work and if it helps to save one life this summer then it’s time well spent."

The group hope to make the booklet available online in the coming weeks.

Published in Water Safety

#RNLI - The crew of Bundoran RNLI were tasked yesterday afternoon (19 January) for their first call out of 2014, to an 18ft pleasure craft with two people on board which suffered engine failure off Mullaghmore Head in Co Sligo.

The alarm was raised with Malin Head Coast Guard shortly before 4pm by mobile phone and the lifeboat launched within three minutes, as many of the crew were already on station completing their Advanced Cardiac First Responder course. 

On arriving at the scene, the volunteer crew found that the occupiers of the pleasure craft were being assisted by local charter fishing boats. The Bundoran lifeboat crew then took the craft under tow to Mullaghmore harbour and returned then to the lifeboat station.
 


Speaking afterwards, Bundoran RNLI deputy launching authority Patrick O'Doherty said: "We were happy to assist the boat owners who had the misfortune of having their engine lose power while out on a Sunday afternoon.

"We would advise all boat owners to ensure that they have a means of contacting the coastguard in case of emergency when out on the water. We would especially recommend the use of a handheld VHF radio which also allows our equipment on the lifeboat to locate a signal quickly."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

#Safety - Bundoran RNLI is among those urging water users to exercise common sense and safety over the current holiday period as persistent stormy weather makes sea conditions treacherous around the Irish coast.

With water hobby gifts like surfboards, bodyboards and kayaks a certainty under the tree on the 25th, the RNLI advises that all usual safety checks should be performed before heading out into the water.

If you are using equipment for the first time, make sure you know how to operate it correctly and most of all take a sensible approach when using this equipment in the water.

Check the weather forecast, check the conditions of the beach or water areas you are in and if you are unsure, seek the advice of a local surf school or coastguard who will be happy to advise you of any imminent or hidden dangers.

Bundoran RNLI lifeboat operations manager Tony McGowan adds: "We want people to enjoy the holidays and any new sporting gifts they receive for Christmas but of course we also want people to be safe and come back in one piece if they venture into the water.

"The lifeboat will as usual be on standby 24/7 over the holiday period and will be ready to launch if requested."

As the end of the year draws close, all of the crew of Bundoran RNLI wish to thank each and every supporter who has contributed to the charity this year for their generous donations. 

Volunteer lifeboat press officer Shane Smyth says: "It’s been a busy year for our fundraising teams with big events like the annual Dinner Dance, the Soapbox Race, the Station to Station Challenge and of course the Boat Push

"Thanks to all of our supporters and our fundraisers who work quietly in the background. Your help to keep us running is very much appreciated. We’d like to wish you all a very happy Christmas and a happy and safe 2014."

Tickets are now on sale for the annual dinner dance which takes place at the Great Northern Hotel on Friday 31 January 2014 with entertainment from Derek Ryan.

Published in Water Safety

#Surfing - When it comes to the world's coolest surfing destinations, Bundoran makes the grade yet again - according to Travel+Leisure magazine.

Nearly 18 months after the Donegal location was named one of the best surfing towns in the world by National Geographic, the big wave hotspot - site of the deciding leg in the 2012 Irish Championships surfing tour - has been included in Travel+Leisure's list of the 'World's Coolest Surf Towns'.

Indeed, Bundoran's listed along with 15 other renowned surf pilgrimage sites such as Encinitas in California, Australia's Byron Bay, Jeffreys Bay in South Africa and Hawaii's Paia and Haleiwa.

"Passion for pubs, music, and surf culture collides" in Bundoran, the magazine says, highlighting the town's three-time hosting of the European Surfing Championships and reputation for rock-band jams "into the wee hours at bars like Chasin' Bull", not to mention the "lively conservation" at Brennan's Criterion, an institution for more than a century.

The accolade for Bundoran comes just a few months after Mullaghmore Head, a little further along the northwest coast in Co Sligo, was named one of USA Today's 'World's Most Surprising Surf Spots'.

And it will surely be good news for Irish tourism chiefs who've recently launched a drive to attract more surfing enthusiasts to our shores, particularly over the quality winter surfing season.

Published in Surfing
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#rnli – Bundoran RNLI lifeboat was launched yesterday afternoon to assist in the search for a vessel which failed to return at its appointed time. The search was centred around the Streedagh area of County Sligo. Sligo Bay lifeboat was also launched to assist in the search in poor visibility conditions as were Killybegs coast Guard and the Sligo based Rescue 118 Helicopter.

Following a search of around 25 minutes, the overdue vessel was found grounded near Milk Harbour. The boat owner was airlifted to Sligo General Hospital and his condition is unknown.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

#RNLI - Bundoran RNLI's annual boat push will take place this Saturday 7 September as the volunteer crew once again embark on the challenge of raising funds for the lifeboat station, which is entering its 40th year of existence.

The boat push will start outside the ambulance base on the Donegal Road in Ballyshannon at noon and members of the lifeboat crew will have buckets with them on the route for people to make a donation. 

The route will take them through Ballyshannon, Finner and into Bundoran, finishing at the lifeboat station at Bundoran Pier, covering a distance of almost 10km in four to five hours.

The fundraising drive is just one of the events which helps to run Bundoran RNLI and keep the Atlantic 85 lifeboat William Henry Liddington maintained and ready to go at a moment’s notice. 

The volunteer crew counts on the generous support of the public to ensure that the RNLI can continue to provide all year search and rescue coverage and we hope to get lots of support on Saturday.

"The boat push has now become an annual fixture in Bundoran RNLI's fundraising calendar and is something the volunteer crew at the station look forward to each year," said Bundoran RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Shane Smyth.

"Not only does it give us a chance to raise much needed funds to continue to run this voluntary service, it also gives us a chance to meet our supporters from the area who continually donate to us despite the tough financial times we find ourselves in."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

#rnli – On Sunday evening (4th August 2013), Bundoran RNLI Lifeboat was launched to a rib which suffered engine failure off Inishmurray island.

The rib with 2 people on board suffered engine failure and made contact with another vessel who in turn called out Bundoran RNLI Lifeboat for assistance. The lifeboat paged at 18.57 launched in 4 minutes and headed directly for the casualty vessel, arriving on scene around 20 minutes later.

The Sligo based helicopter Rescue 118 offered assistance by releasing a smoke signal to direct the lifeboat to the rib. On reaching the rib, one of the volunteer crew of Bundoran RNLI transferred to it and assisted the the occupants onto the lifeboat and remained on board to assist with the towing of the vessel to Mullaghmore Harbour.

The lifeboat then completed the tow and returned to base.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Ireland's Offshore Renewable Energy

Because of Ireland's location at the Atlantic edge of the EU, it has more offshore energy potential than most other countries in Europe. The conditions are suitable for the development of the full range of current offshore renewable energy technologies.

Offshore Renewable Energy FAQs

Offshore renewable energy draws on the natural energy provided by wind, wave and tide to convert it into electricity for industry and domestic consumption.

Offshore wind is the most advanced technology, using fixed wind turbines in coastal areas, while floating wind is a developing technology more suited to deeper water. In 2018, offshore wind provided a tiny fraction of global electricity supply, but it is set to expand strongly in the coming decades into a USD 1 trillion business, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). It says that turbines are growing in size and in power capacity, which in turn is "delivering major performance and cost improvements for offshore wind farms".

The global offshore wind market grew nearly 30% per year between 2010 and 2018, according to the IEA, due to rapid technology improvements, It calculated that about 150 new offshore wind projects are in active development around the world. Europe in particular has fostered the technology's development, led by Britain, Germany and Denmark, but China added more capacity than any other country in 2018.

A report for the Irish Wind Energy Assocation (IWEA) by the Carbon Trust – a British government-backed limited company established to accelerate Britain's move to a low carbon economy - says there are currently 14 fixed-bottom wind energy projects, four floating wind projects and one project that has yet to choose a technology at some stage of development in Irish waters. Some of these projects are aiming to build before 2030 to contribute to the 5GW target set by the Irish government, and others are expected to build after 2030. These projects have to secure planning permission, obtain a grid connection and also be successful in a competitive auction in the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).

The electricity generated by each turbine is collected by an offshore electricity substation located within the wind farm. Seabed cables connect the offshore substation to an onshore substation on the coast. These cables transport the electricity to land from where it will be used to power homes, farms and businesses around Ireland. The offshore developer works with EirGrid, which operates the national grid, to identify how best to do this and where exactly on the grid the project should connect.

The new Marine Planning and Development Management Bill will create a new streamlined system for planning permission for activity or infrastructure in Irish waters or on the seabed, including offshore wind farms. It is due to be published before the end of 2020 and enacted in 2021.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE. Is there scope for community involvement in offshore wind? The IWEA says that from the early stages of a project, the wind farm developer "should be engaging with the local community to inform them about the project, answer their questions and listen to their concerns". It says this provides the community with "the opportunity to work with the developer to help shape the final layout and design of the project". Listening to fishing industry concerns, and how fishermen may be affected by survey works, construction and eventual operation of a project is "of particular concern to developers", the IWEA says. It says there will also be a community benefit fund put in place for each project. It says the final details of this will be addressed in the design of the RESS (see below) for offshore wind but it has the potential to be "tens of millions of euro over the 15 years of the RESS contract". The Government is also considering the possibility that communities will be enabled to invest in offshore wind farms though there is "no clarity yet on how this would work", the IWEA says.

Based on current plans, it would amount to around 12 GW of offshore wind energy. However, the IWEA points out that is unlikely that all of the projects planned will be completed. The industry says there is even more significant potential for floating offshore wind off Ireland's west coast and the Programme for Government contains a commitment to develop a long-term plan for at least 30 GW of floating offshore wind in our deeper waters.

There are many different models of turbines. The larger a turbine, the more efficient it is in producing electricity at a good price. In choosing a turbine model the developer will be conscious of this ,but also has to be aware the impact of the turbine on the environment, marine life, biodiversity and visual impact. As a broad rule an offshore wind turbine will have a tip-height of between 165m and 215m tall. However, turbine technology is evolving at a rapid rate with larger more efficient turbines anticipated on the market in the coming years.

 

The Renewable Electricity Support Scheme is designed to support the development of renewable energy projects in Ireland. Under the scheme wind farms and solar farms compete against each other in an auction with the projects which offer power at the lowest price awarded contracts. These contracts provide them with a guaranteed price for their power for 15 years. If they obtain a better price for their electricity on the wholesale market they must return the difference to the consumer.

Yes. The first auction for offshore renewable energy projects is expected to take place in late 2021.

Cost is one difference, and technology is another. Floating wind farm technology is relatively new, but allows use of deeper water. Ireland's 50-metre contour line is the limit for traditional bottom-fixed wind farms, and it is also very close to population centres, which makes visibility of large turbines an issue - hence the attraction of floating structures Do offshore wind farms pose a navigational hazard to shipping? Inshore fishermen do have valid concerns. One of the first steps in identifying a site as a potential location for an offshore wind farm is to identify and assess the level of existing marine activity in the area and this particularly includes shipping. The National Marine Planning Framework aims to create, for the first time, a plan to balance the various kinds of offshore activity with the protection of the Irish marine environment. This is expected to be published before the end of 2020, and will set out clearly where is suitable for offshore renewable energy development and where it is not - due, for example, to shipping movements and safe navigation.

YEnvironmental organisations are concerned about the impact of turbines on bird populations, particularly migrating birds. A Danish scientific study published in 2019 found evidence that larger birds were tending to avoid turbine blades, but said it didn't have sufficient evidence for smaller birds – and cautioned that the cumulative effect of farms could still have an impact on bird movements. A full environmental impact assessment has to be carried out before a developer can apply for planning permission to develop an offshore wind farm. This would include desk-based studies as well as extensive surveys of the population and movements of birds and marine mammals, as well as fish and seabed habitats. If a potential environmental impact is identified the developer must, as part of the planning application, show how the project will be designed in such a way as to avoid the impact or to mitigate against it.

A typical 500 MW offshore wind farm would require an operations and maintenance base which would be on the nearby coast. Such a project would generally create between 80-100 fulltime jobs, according to the IWEA. There would also be a substantial increase to in-direct employment and associated socio-economic benefit to the surrounding area where the operation and maintenance hub is located.

The recent Carbon Trust report for the IWEA, entitled Harnessing our potential, identified significant skills shortages for offshore wind in Ireland across the areas of engineering financial services and logistics. The IWEA says that as Ireland is a relatively new entrant to the offshore wind market, there are "opportunities to develop and implement strategies to address the skills shortages for delivering offshore wind and for Ireland to be a net exporter of human capital and skills to the highly competitive global offshore wind supply chain". Offshore wind requires a diverse workforce with jobs in both transferable (for example from the oil and gas sector) and specialist disciplines across apprenticeships and higher education. IWEA have a training network called the Green Tech Skillnet that facilitates training and networking opportunities in the renewable energy sector.

It is expected that developing the 3.5 GW of offshore wind energy identified in the Government's Climate Action Plan would create around 2,500 jobs in construction and development and around 700 permanent operations and maintenance jobs. The Programme for Government published in 2020 has an enhanced target of 5 GW of offshore wind which would create even more employment. The industry says that in the initial stages, the development of offshore wind energy would create employment in conducting environmental surveys, community engagement and development applications for planning. As a site moves to construction, people with backgrounds in various types of engineering, marine construction and marine transport would be recruited. Once the site is up and running , a project requires a team of turbine technicians, engineers and administrators to ensure the wind farm is fully and properly maintained, as well as crew for the crew transfer vessels transporting workers from shore to the turbines.

The IEA says that today's offshore wind market "doesn't even come close to tapping the full potential – with high-quality resources available in most major markets". It estimates that offshore wind has the potential to generate more than 420 000 Terawatt hours per year (TWh/yr) worldwide – as in more than 18 times the current global electricity demand. One Terawatt is 114 megawatts, and to put it in context, Scotland it has a population a little over 5 million and requires 25 TWh/yr of electrical energy.

Not as advanced as wind, with anchoring a big challenge – given that the most effective wave energy has to be in the most energetic locations, such as the Irish west coast. Britain, Ireland and Portugal are regarded as most advanced in developing wave energy technology. The prize is significant, the industry says, as there are forecasts that varying between 4000TWh/yr to 29500TWh/yr. Europe consumes around 3000TWh/year.

The industry has two main umbrella organisations – the Irish Wind Energy Association, which represents both onshore and offshore wind, and the Marine Renewables Industry Association, which focuses on all types of renewable in the marine environment.

©Afloat 2020

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