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Displaying items by tag: Scotland

#SB3 - As the Dublin Bay Sailing Club SB3 class debates the merits of Saturday versus Sunday club racing with a contracted fleet size next season there has been a call from the North for Irish crews to head to Scotland for a new championships on Loch Fyne next year.

There has been a great deal of effort put into developing the Laser SB3 class on the west coast of Scotland, not all of its has been successful to date.

But there a number of boats and crew committed to racing on the upper clyde for evening and weekend racing.

The class has previously failed to become established in Scotland, possibly as a result of high boat prices in the past according to local sources. However, with the availability of great value second hand boats, and the affordability of racing them, it looks set now to be a success, according to class exponent Doug Paton.

For the 2012 Laser SB3 Scottish Championships, the class are going to Loch Fyne to take part in the Scottish Series event. Here, says Doug, the class will benefit from their own one design class start and nine windward-leeward Races over 3 days organised by the Clyde Cruising Club.

Perhaps there is advice Irish crews can give to Scottish counterparts on the initial set up of the fleet. In 2007 the boat exploded on to the scene creating a national fleet of over 100 boats to instantly become the biggest noe design class in the country.

There will be free craning on 2nd & 4th June provided by Macleod Construction. The class will also benefit from free berthing at the new Portavadie Marina. The class has provisionally booked out the bunkhouse accommodation block in the very nice new development at the marina exclusively to the class. As a further draw intend to have class socials held between tarbert an portavadie with the added help of the water taxi service.

For further information contact Scottish SB3 Rep Doug Paton: [email protected]

Published in SB20
A passenger ferry heading to Northrrn Ireland was left adrift off the coast of western Scotland early yesterday after suffering engine failure.
The Press Association reports that the Stena Navigator was en route from Stranraer to Belfast when both of its engines broke down.
The ferry - carrying 70 passengers and 47 crew - was adrift some four nautical miles west of Corsewall Point lighthouse at the Mull of Galloway.
Clyde Coastguard confirmed that two Svitzer tugs, Norton Cross and Willowgarth, were dispatched to the vessel with the aim of towing it to Belfast, but the ferry managed to get one enging going and propelled itself at half power across the North Channel.
The Navigator arrived in port accompanied by the tugs around 4:30am. No injuries were reported in the incident.
A passenger ferry heading to Northern Ireland was left adrift off the coast of western Scotland early yesterday after suffering engine failure. 

The Press Association reports that the Stena Navigator was en route from Stranraer to Belfast when both of its engines broke down.

The ferry - carrying 70 passengers and 47 crew - was adrift some four nautical miles west of Corsewall Point lighthouse at the Mull of Galloway.

Clyde Coastguard confirmed that two Svitzer tugs, Norton Cross and Willowgarth, were dispatched to the vessel with the aim of towing it to Belfast, but the ferry managed to get one enging going and propelled itself at half power across the North Channel.

The Navigator arrived in port accompanied by the tugs around 4:30am. No injuries were reported in the incident.
Published in Ferry
A near-60ft long whale stranded on a beach in Scotland's Western Isles last week has died.
According to The Daily Telegraph, the whale was discovered on South Uist last Monday afternoon.
Despite the best efforts of rescue volunteers from British Divers Marine Life Rescue, the two-tonne creature - believed to be a sei or fin whale - could not be refloated.
Sadly, euthanasia was also ruled out as an option because of the side of the animal.
Death was pronounced on Tuesday, and a post-mortem will now be carried out to find out what may have caused the whale to beach itself.
The stranding comes after two serious incidents in Scotland earlier this year.
A previously reported on Afloat.ie, 25 pilot whales died after a mass stranding at the Kyle of Durness in July, while May saw a lucky escape for another pod of pilot whales at Loch Carman in South Uist.
This time last year 33 pilot whales from a group that almost stranded in Loch Carman were found dead on a beach in Donegal.

A near-60ft long whale stranded on a beach in Scotland's Western Isles last week has died.

According to The Daily Telegraph, the whale was discovered on South Uist last Monday afternoon.

Despite the best efforts of rescue volunteers from British Divers Marine Life Rescue, the two-tonne creature - believed to be a sei or fin whale - could not be refloated.

Sadly, euthanasia was also ruled out as an option because of the side of the animal.

Death was pronounced on Tuesday, and a post-mortem will now be carried out to find out what may have caused the whale to beach itself.

The stranding comes after two serious incidents in Scotland earlier this year.

A previously reported on Afloat.ie, 25 pilot whales died after a mass stranding at the Kyle of Durness in July, while May saw a lucky escape for another pod of pilot whales at Loch Carman in South Uist.

This time last year 33 pilot whales from a group that almost stranded in Loch Carman were found dead on a beach in Donegal.

Published in Marine Wildlife
Scottish campaigners have made their final pleas to save the Clyde coastguard station from closure, the Greenock Telegraph reports.
Under the UK government's plans to streamline Britain's coastguard network, the control centre at Greenock is set to be scrapped with the loss of 31 jobs, while River Clyde rescues will in future be handled from Northern Ireland.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, Northern Ireland's only dedicated search and rescue centre was saved from the chop following a review of plans to reform the Maritime and Coastguard Agency's nationwide network.
A consultation on the propose closure concluded yesterday, and locals join staff, union leaders and politicians in hoping they can persuade the government to give Clyde a reprieve.
"Local knowledge and understanding are vital when dealing with emergency situations." said local MSP Stuart McMillan.
"To remove a committed and fully functioning coastguard service with expert local knowledge would leave a void that could not be filled by an over stretched centre in Belfast."
The Greenock Telegraph has more on the story HERE (registration required).

Scottish campaigners have made their final pleas to save the Clyde coastguard station from closure, the Greenock Telegraph reports.

Under the UK government's plans to streamline Britain's coastguard network, the control centre at Greenock is set to be scrapped with the loss of 31 jobs, while River Clyde rescues will in future be handled from Northern Ireland.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, Northern Ireland's only dedicated search and rescue centre on Belfast Lough was saved from the chop following a review of plans to reform the Maritime and Coastguard Agency's nationwide network.

A consultation on the propose closure concluded yesterday, and locals join staff, union leaders and politicians in hoping they can persuade the government to give Clyde a reprieve.

"Local knowledge and understanding are vital when dealing with emergency situations." said local MSP Stuart McMillan.

"To remove a committed and fully functioning coastguard service with expert local knowledge would leave a void that could not be filled by an over stretched centre in Belfast."

The Greenock Telegraph has more on the story HERE (registration required).

Published in Coastguard
The body of a woman found washed up on a beach in Scotland's Mull of Kintyre is believed to be that of Northern Irish woman Karen Coyles, who disappeared from her home in Ballycastle, Co Antrim on 11 September.
The Irish Times reports that a tourist found the body yesterday afternoon. It is believed to have been in the water for some time.
A postmortem will be carried out today on the body, the identity of which has yet to be confirmed.
A major search and rescue operation had been launched for Coyles, 47, whose car was found at McQuillan's GAA club where she is captain of the camogie team.

The body of a woman found washed up on a beach in Scotland's Mull of Kintyre is believed to be that of Northern Irish woman Karen Coyles, who disappeared from her home in Ballycastle, Co Antrim on 11 September.

The Irish Times reports that a tourist found the body yesterday afternoon. It is believed to have been in the water for some time.

A postmortem will be carried out today on the body, the identity of which has yet to be confirmed.

A major search and rescue operation had been launched for Coyles, 47, whose car was found at McQuillan's GAA club where she is captain of the camogie team.

Published in News Update
A breach in the engine compartment caused the fishing vessel Ainmire to take on water and sink off the coast of Scotland in April last year, according to the official report into the incident.
All crew on board the vessel were transferred safetly to another fishing boat that responded to its distress call, some 30 miles northwest of the Butt of Lewis on the morning of 29 April 2010.
The Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) report concluded that the failure of a sea water cooling pipe in the engine room was the most likely cause of the flooding, and pointed to the fact that the pipework had not been renewed during the life of the vessel.
It was also noted that the bilge pump and its motors were located under the floor plates in the engine room, and thus were inoperable when the water level had risen in the compartment.
In addition, the MCIB report found that the Ainmire has been operating without a Fishing Vessel Safety Certificate for more than six months at the time of the incident.
Though the owner had submitted a survey application and paid the required fee to the Marine Survey Office (MSO) the previous summer, a communication breakdown resulted in the required survey not being carried out before the expiration of the vessel's previous certification.
The MCIB advised boat owners and operators to be extra vigilant regarding the location of bilge pumps in their vessels.
It also warned that survey applications for certification "may not accommodate all situations", and that the issuing of a recepit is not a guarantee that an application is being dealt with.
The full report is available to download as a PDF from the MCIB website HERE.

A breach in the engine compartment caused the fishing vessel Ainmire to take on water and sink off the coast of Scotland in April last year, according to the official report into the incident.

All crew on board the vessel were transferred safetly to another fishing boat that responded to its distress call, some 30 miles northwest of the Butt of Lewis on the morning of 29 April 2010.

The Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) report concluded that the failure of a sea water cooling pipe in the engine room was the most likely cause of the flooding, and pointed to the fact that the pipework had not been renewed during the life of the vessel.

It was also noted that the bilge pump and its motors were located under the floor plates in the engine room, and thus were inoperable when the water level had risen in the compartment.

In addition, the MCIB report found that the Ainmire has been operating without a Fishing Vessel Safety Certificate for more than six months at the time of the incident.

Though the owner had submitted a survey application and paid the required fee to the Marine Survey Office (MSO) the previous summer, a communication breakdown resulted in the required survey not being carried out before the expiration of the vessel's previous certification.

The MCIB advised boat owners and operators to be extra vigilant regarding the location of bilge pumps in their vessels. 

It also warned that survey applications for certification "may not accommodate all situations", and that the issuing of a recepit is not a guarantee that an application is being dealt with.

The full report is available to download as a PDF from the MCIB website HERE.

Published in MCIB
Angus Vajk (22) a biology undergraduate from Dunbeg, near Oban, Argyll, is heading for Galway in Ireland this weekend to take part in the Bollinger World Oyster Opening Championships on 24th September.

Son of oyster farmers Hugo and Judith Vajk of Caledonian Oysters, Angus won the Loch Fyne Scottish Oyster Opening Championships in Glasgow last month, beating a dozen other competitors including his father!

"I have been opening oysters since before I could walk," he quipped, as he accepted a prize plate from Virginia Sumsion, Marketing and Events Director of Loch Fyne Oysters. "I am thrilled to have won, and excited about going to the world championships, but it will be daunting being up against so many experts. I will be putting in a lot of speed practice this week!"

Part of his prize was a trip to Galway to enjoy the annual international oyster and seafood festival, but Angus had to wait for the organisers of the world competition to confirm that his opening time of 4 minutes 5 seconds for 30 oysters was good enough to allow him to compete there.

"Angus was a worthy winner and we are delighted to sponsor his entry in the worlds. We hope he will do well and bring the cup back home!" said Virginia Sumsion.

Seafood Scotland, which helped to organise the Scottish competition at the Glasgow Riverside Festival, also wishes Angus the very best of luck. "This is the first time ever that the world oyster opening championship has had a Scottish competitor, so it is an honour for Angus to fly the flag for his country," said Marketing Manger Clare Dixon.

Published in Maritime Festivals
Time may be running out for Scotland's only resident pod of killer whales, the Scotsman reports.
The four males and five females have been studied at their home in the west of Scotland by the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust and the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group for almost 20 years.
The marine mammals have been sighted at various times since 1981 by members of the public in Scotland, Wales and Ireland.
But since 1992 the group - known as the West Coast Community - has failed to produce a single surviving calf.
Marine biologist Dr Andy Foote said: "It's probably too late to save this group. I do believe that they will become extinct in our lifetime which is very regrettable since not many people even know that such a distinctive group of killer whales exist just off our coast."
Dr Foote believes possible contaminants in the waters off Scotland's west coast could be one reason why the pod is not successfully breeding.
The Scotsman has more on the storty HERE.

Time may be running out for Scotland's only resident pod of killer whales, the Scotsman reports.

The four males and five females have been studied at their home in the west of Scotland by the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust and the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group for almost 20 years.

The marine mammals have been sighted at various times since 1981 by members of the public in Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

But since 1992 the group - known as the West Coast Community - has failed to produce a single surviving calf.

Marine biologist Dr Andy Foote said: "It's probably too late to save this group. I do believe that they will become extinct in our lifetime which is very regrettable since not many people even know that such a distinctive group of killer whales exist just off our coast."

Dr Foote believes possible contaminants in the waters off Scotland's west coast could be one reason why the pod is not successfully breeding.

The Scotsman has more on the story HERE.

Published in Marine Wildlife
The yacht once owned by former Taoiseach Charles Haughey will return to Ireland next week for its new life as a marine research vessel after completing the first leg of the 2011 Tall Ships Races.
The 52-foot Celtic Mist, the only Irish entrant in this year's races, came "a respectable last in our class”, skipper Fiacc Ó Brolcháin told The Irish Times from Scotland.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the yacht will know be fitted out with scientific instruments after it was gifted by the Haughey family to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) to support its conservation work.

The yacht once owned by former Taoiseach Charles Haughey will return to Ireland next week for its new life as a marine research vessel after completing the first leg of the 2011 Tall Ships Races. 

The 52-foot Celtic Mist, the only Irish entrant in this year's races, came "a respectable last in our class”, skipper Fiacc Ó Brolcháin told The Irish Times from Scotland. 

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the yacht will know be fitted out with scientific instruments after it was gifted by the Haughey family to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) to support its conservation work.

Published in Tall Ships
A mature student from the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology is taking part in the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group's Ship Surveys Programme.
Irish Weather Online reports that Enda McKeogh is on board the Marine Institute's research vessel Celtic Explorer off the west coast of Scotland, where he has already made a number of sightings of whales and dolphins.
He said: "I expected to be sea sick most of the time and not to see many cetaceans but this has proven not to be the case so far."
McKeogh is recording is sightings in a diary on the IWDG website HERE.

A mature student from the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology is taking part in the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group's Ship Surveys Programme.

Irish Weather Online reports that Enda McKeogh is on board the Marine Institute's research vessel Celtic Explorer off the west coast of Scotland, where he has already made a number of sightings of whales and dolphins.

He said: "I expected to be sea sick most of the time and not to see many cetaceans but this has proven not to be the case so far."

McKeogh is recording is sightings in a diary on the IWDG website HERE.

Published in Marine Wildlife
Page 9 of 11

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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