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Displaying items by tag: Marine Notice

Deep-water quay works have begun this week at Ros an Mhíl Fishery Harbour Centre in Co Galway, just weeks after the contractor was announced for the €30 million project.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the new Ros an Mhíl development will be accessible to large vessels such as Naval Service vessels, Marine Institute research vessels, marine survey vessels and marine leisure craft

The works were set to begin on Monday 30 January, will be ongoing until December 2024 and include, but are not limited to, the following main elements:

  • Construction of a new 200m-long quay wall structure, including all associated infilling and land reclamation;
  • Construction of reclamation area of circa 2.4 hectares to act as a quay/storage hinterland area;
  • Dredging of a 30m wide x 200m long berthing pocket adjacent to the new quay to a depth of -10.0m Chart Datum;
  • Dredging of a navigation channel and turning circle to a depth of -7.0m A;
  • Provision of all water and electrical services;
  • Heavy-duty pavement surfacing to new quay structure area;
  • Ancillary marine facilities and services; and
  • Security and access arrangements for quay facilities.

The works are being advanced by civil engineering crews working from the adjacent lands, existing harbour infrastructure and from jack-up barges, pontoons, heavy civil engineering plant and machinery, work vessels and platforms. Divers are also employed on site.

For safety reasons, mariners are advised to proceed slowly and with caution in the approach channel to the inner harbour and within the inner harbour area and to give the works a clear berth. Wave-wash from vessels should be avoided.

For contact details and a plan of proposed works, see Marine Notice No 8 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Fishing

The first and second legs of this year’s Irish Anglerfish and Megrim Survey (IAMS 2022) will be carried out from Saturday 11 February to Tuesday 7 March.

Surveys will be conducted to the West, Southwest and South Coasts of Ireland by the Marine Institute in fulfilment of Ireland’s obligations under the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).

IAMS is a demersal trawl survey consisting of approximately 110 otter trawls, each of 60 minutes duration, in ICES areas 7b, 7c, 7g, 7h, 7j and 7k.

Fishing in 2022 will take place within a three-nautical-mile radius of the positions indicated in Appendices 1 and 2 of Marine Notice No 02 of 2023, a PDF of which is attached below.

The survey will be conducted by the RV Celtic Explorer (callsign EIGB) which will display appropriate lights and signals. The vessel will be towing a Jackson demersal trawl during fishing operations.

The Marine Institute requests that commercial fishing and other marine operators keep a 3nm radius area around the tow points clear of any gear or apparatus during the survey period.

Further details are included in the Marine Notice below.

Published in Fishing

Marine Notice No 7 of 2023 advises of a safety notice issued by the Dutch Safety Board for rocket parachute flares relating to model L-35 or L-35A manufactured by LECEA Sistemas Pirotécnicos Avanzados, S.A. The manufacturer has also issued a recall notice.

All owners of a Red Rocket Parachute Flare from Pirolec, type L-35/L35A, batch 0525/2021–113 are requested to stop using flares from this batch and replace them. If in doubt, operators should contact the manufacturer at [email protected]

This safety alert follows a fatal incident onboard a Dutch vessel when a flare reportedly exploded prematurely during an attempted launch.

It is important to note that the SOLAS Convention requires no less than 12 rocket parachute flares, complying with the requirements of the Life-Saving Appliances Code, shall be carried and be stowed on or near the navigation bridge.

Published in Water Safety

Energia intends to deploy marine acoustic monitoring equipment off the coasts of Co Waterford and Co Wexford between now and 24 February, subject to weather and operational constraints.

The deployments are part of works for Energia’s North Celtic Sea and South Irish Sea offshore wind projects in these respective areas.

The North Celtic Sea is a renewable energy project proposed to be located a minimum of 10km and up to 25km off the Co Waterford Coast. The South Irish Sea project, meanwhile, is proposed to be located a minimum of 10km and up to 25km off the coasts of Wexford and south Wicklow.

Acoustic monitoring equipment will remain on site for a period of three to four months, weather window permitting. After this period the devices will be retrieved and redeployed at new locations, that will continue to cover a 12-month period.

The equipment consists of four acoustic devices and their moorings, which will be used to monitor for marine mammal activity in the proposed wind park areas.

Deployments in both areas will be conducted by the MV Sharp Shooter (callsign EI5069). As this vessel will be deploying survey equipment, it will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre. All other vessels are requested to leave a wide berth during the operations and pass at minimum speed to reduce vessel wash.

The MV Sharp Shooter will be monitoring VHF Channel 16 and Working on VHF Channel 6. All operations will be during the hours of daylight only. Throughout survey operations, the vessels will be displaying the appropriate lights and shapes.

For more on the acoustic devices, their planned locations, relevant maps and contact details, see Marine Notice No 5 of 2023 and Marine Notice No 6 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Power From the Sea

LCF Marine have planned to deploy two data buoys in Tralee Bay this week as part of dredge monitoring for Fenit Harbour.

The buoys were scheduled to be deployed on Monday 23 January subject to weather and operational constraints.

If the deployment is delayed due to the weather, the deployment will be carried out on the next viable tide and weather window.

The buoys will be in place for 10 weeks at the coordinates indicated in Marine Notice No 3 of 2023, which is attached below.

These data buoys will be deployed on a single point mooring consisting of 19mm diameter chain and a on-tonne sinker weight.

A lantern on each buoy will give out five yellow flashes every 20 seconds. The light is visible for up to three nautical miles.

The data buoys are yellow in colour and each buoy is equipped with a navigational beacon, radar reflector, St Andrew’s cross, GSM antennas, solar panels, lead batteries, instrument cables and a TechWorks Marine Black Box.

Works vessel An tOileanach (callsign EI-5930) has been employed to deploy the buoys. During the deployment and recovery, radio transmissions will be conducted on VHF channels and will be monitored on Channel 14 (Fenit Harbour working channel) and Channel 16.

During operations the work vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre, and all other vessels are requested to leave a wide berth during the deployment operations.

Published in Irish Harbours

Ireland’s first Marine Notice of 2023 is out of this world — quite literally, as it advises of potential hazard at sea from a satellite rocket launch from Cornwall next week.

Virgin Orbit has designated a space launch hazard area off the South West Coast active from 10pm on Monday 9 to 1am on Tuesday 10 January, subject to weather and operational constraints.

Where the launch attempt proceeds as planned, no debris will enter this area. However, there is a low probability for the vehicle to produce dangerous debris if a mishap were to occur, Virgin Orbit says.

Mariners are advised to avoid the marine hazard area during and leading up to the launch period due to possible dangerous conditions from potential rocket debris.

More precise details of the launch will be promulgated though the MSI service by the Irish Coast Guard and UK;s HM Coastguard on VHF, MF and NAVTEX broadcasts, five days before the launch.

Virgin Orbit says it will be taking every step possible to monitor the area during the launch attempt. Mariners are advised to report any debris or pollution sightings in the event of a launch mishap.

Backup launch dates as well as relevant coordinates, a map and contact details can be found in Marine Notice No 1 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Marine Warning

Marine Notices No 37 of 2021 and No 44 of 2021 advised of the deployment of two wave buoys and one floating LiDAR buoy at the Dublin Array offshore wind farm on the Bray and Kish Banks.

The two wave buoys were recovered from site in June 2022. Now the Department of Transport has now been advised by Partrac Ltd that the floating LiDAR buoy on Bray Bank is scheduled to be recovered in the period between Thursday 5 and Thursday 19 January 2023, subject to weather and operational constraints.

The floating LiDAR buoy at Latitude 53° 10.645’ N, Longitude 005° 55.785' W has a square footprint with an area of 4 sqm and height of around 4m above the water line. It is yellow in colour and has a St Andrew cross on top.

It also contains a yellow light which emits five flashes every 20 seconds and is visible for up to three nautical miles.

The vessel CT Barnston (callsign MUZU5) will recover the buoy and tow it back to Wicklow Harbour for demobilisation. Dublin Port will be contacted in advance regarding the operations with estimated timings. The buoy will be towed some 30m astern of the CT Branston at a maximum speed of 3.5 knots.

During recovery of the floating LiDAR buoy on Bray Bank, the vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre. All other vessels are requested to leave a wide berth during the recovery and towing operations. Radio transmissions will be conducted with VTS and other seafarers to notify them of the buoy operations.

Contact details can be found in Marine Notice No 85 of 2022, attached below.

Published in Power From the Sea

Research survey TC22017 will be carried out in the Irish Sea in the vicinity of the Kish Bank Lighthouse by the University of Limerick (UL) in collaboration with the Marine Institute from this Sunday 11 to Friday 16 December, subject to weather and operational constraints.

The aim of this survey the testing and development of UL’s underwater ROV (remotely operated vehicle) system and automation platforms.

Ship-time will be focused on trialling comprehensive multi-disciplinary control and inspection methods, utilising new technologies to enable automated offshore asset inspection.

The primary outcome of the trials is to work towards the development of a framework and technique for the inspection of offshore assets remotely.

The survey will be conducted by the RV Tom Crean (callsign EIYX3) which will display appropriate lights and signals. The operations will take place between 7am and 7pm daily. The vessel will mainly run in DP mode while the ROV operates close to Kish Bank Lighthouse.

A map and coordinates of the survey area as well as contact details and a list of equipment used can be found in Marine Notice No 84 of 2022, attached below.

Published in Marine Science

The Department of Transport is currently drafting new regulations entitled “Fishing Vessels (Certification of Deck Officers and Engineer Officers) Regulations”, which will revoke and replace the current regulations, titled Fishing Vessels (Certification of Deck Officers and Engineer Officers) Regulations, 1988 (S.I. No. 289 of 1988) and its amending regulations.

Similar to the 1988 regulations, the new regulations will apply to fishers aboard fishing vessels that are 15 metres in length overall and over, and government research fishery vessels.

A summary of the new regulations is included in Marine Notice No 83 of 2022, attached below, and interested parties are invited to submit their views by 1pm on Tuesday 31 January.

Comments or observations on the proposed new regulations should be sent by email, with “FV Certification Regs” in the subject line, to [email protected] Please note that details of submissions received may be published on the department’s website.

Published in Fishing

The Department of Transport has been advised that a geophysical survey will be undertaken in the north Celtic Sea, south of Co Cork, for equipment testing and training purposes.

The operations are subject to weather and operational constraints but are anticipated to start in early December 2022 and be completed by late January 2023.

The survey will be conducted by the survey vessels Roman Rebel (callsign 2ICA5) and Lady Kathleen (callsign EIXT2), the former on a 24-hour basis and the latter on a 12-hour basis.

These vessels will be restricted in their ability to manoeuvre when surveying due to the deployment of the towed survey equipment, which could be up to 200 metres astern of the vessels. The vessels will display appropriate lights and signals.

All other vessels operating in the area are requested to leave a wide berth. Mariners are advised to keep continuous watch on VHF Channel 16 when navigating the area as outlined by a map and coordinates in Marine Notice No 82 of 2022 attached below, which also has contact details.

Published in News Update
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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.

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