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Displaying items by tag: Shannon

#WIORA– As a flagship event to mark their 50th year of sailing on the Shannon EstuaryFoynes Yacht Club are setting an aggressive target to attract 50 boats to next year’s West of Ireland Offshore Racing Association (WIORA) sailing championships to be held from the 11th to 14th of July. The WIORA poster is below.

Ed Conway and Raymond McGibney are flying the flag for Foynes having being recently re-elected to the WIORA committee for another year.

IRC, ECHO and White Sails classes will be raced and the club says a festival atmosphere ashore will be 'guaranteed with well-priced, quality catering and top class live entertainment' provided at the recently renovated clubhouse. 

All boats entered will be given free and secure berthing.  Free lift-in/lift-out of trailer sailors will also be arranged.  Liam Dineen has been appointed OOD and already over forty boats have registered.

In addition to all Western clubs, Foynes will be canvassing sailors from the active racing fleet on Lough Derg to come by road or river to join in this celebration sailing event, last held in Foynes in 1998. 

While standard “around the cans” windward-leeward courses will be laid for the IRC and Echo fleets, more varied courses for white sails will be set, taking yachts to all parts of the scenic estuary. A special section is currently being added to the club website to cover all aspects of the event.

More on The Estuary here

wiora2012foynes

Published in WIORA
The Irish Times reports that a man and a woman were rescued in Galway Bay yesterday afternoon after their sailing dinghy capsized.
The pair were winched to safety by the Shannon-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter off the Co Clare coast close to Blackhead.
They were subsequently treated at University Hospital Galway for possible hypothermia. No other injuries were reported.
The Irish Times reports that a man and a woman were rescued in Galway Bay yesterday afternoon after their sailing dinghy capsized.

The pair were lifted to safety by the Shannon-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter off the Co Clare coast, close to Blackhead.

They were subsequently treated at University Hospital Galway for possible hypothermia. No other injuries were reported.
Published in Coastguard
A former Olympian's 'mid-life crisis' and a love of  traditional boat building has led to a unique partnership in Roscommon where the art of clinker boat construction is being kept alive. 85–year–old boat builder Jimmy Furey, the doyene of the Shannon One Design class, took on 1988 Seoul dinghy sailor Cathy MacAleavey as his 'apprentice' last winter. The story of the 16-foot wooden dinghy they built has been recounted on RTE Television this week. Click here for the Nationwide programme by Niall Martin.
Published in Maritime TV
An injured man fisherman airlifted to hospital yesterday from a boat off Kerry coast, The Irish Times reports.
The Shannon-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter was dispatched to assist the crewmember on the UK-registered fishing vessel Achieve, some 110 miles southwest of the Blasket Islands.
He was airlifted to Tralee Regional Hospital, where he is being treated for serious injuries.
The incident marked the fourth time that the Shannon helicopter has been called into action this week.
This included its assistance of the crew of the yacht Rambler 100, which capsized near Fastnet Rock while competing in this year's Rolex Fastnet Race last weekend.

An injured man fisherman airlifted to hospital yesterday from a boat off Kerry coast, The Irish Times reports.

The Shannon-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter was dispatched to assist the crewmember on the UK-registered fishing vessel Achieve, some 110 miles southwest of the Blasket Islands. 

He was airlifted to Tralee Regional Hospital, where he is being treated for serious injuries.

The incident marked the fourth time that the Shannon helicopter has been called into action this week. 

This included its assistance of the crew of the yacht Rambler 100, which capsized near Fastnet Rock while competing in this year's Rolex Fastnet Race last weekend.

Published in Coastguard
Waterways Ireland is advising Shannon Navigation users that a vessel is presently sunk immediately downstream of the bridge at Shannonbridge and is a hazard to navigation.

It is intended to lift this vessel using a pontoon and lifting equipment on Thurs 30 Jun 2011, commencing at 08.00hrs. It is expected that the operation will take four hours. Masters should expect to be delayed when passing through the area.

All vessels passing the pontoons should exercise due caution and heed the advice and instructions of the safety boat in attendance.

Southbound vessels in particular should be aware of their speed as they approach the navigation arch with the attending flow in order to avoid a close quarters situation with the pontoon. Use of extra fenders in the bow area of vessels would be a prudent precautionary measure when passing the lifting rig.

Published in Inland Waterways

Powerboaters have been asked to heed their wash when passing vessels under sail. The request comes on the eve of the Shannon One Design (SOD) long distance race. SODs will race from Athlone lock to Banagher harbour on Sat the 25th and from Banagher to Portumna bridge on Sun 26th.

Published in Shannon One Design

As the first vessel edged under the Bridge and the inland waterways. Fleet turned purposely into Banagher Harbour, it was clear that these were no ordinary boats. These were the vanguard of the Heritage Boats that are celebrating the 10th anniversary of their association over the coming weeks.

The 6th Class students of Saint Rynagh's National School were eagerly awaiting the arrival of the fleet. In recent weeks they have been participating is a project centred round the Heritage Boats, their links with Banagher and incorporating the wider heritage and history of the Shannon River. The students, supported by the school principal Mr Fergal McMahon, class teacher Ms Catherine Dolan and associate teacher and local historian Mr James Scully, explored the impact that the River Shannon has had on the town and its hinterland over the centuries.

The Heritage Boats, now visiting the town's harbour, are the very same boats that many decades ago carried the cargos that were the lifeblood of the nation's commerce. Banagher was an important harbour and distribution point on the inland waterway system.

Supported by Offaly County Council and with the great help of renowned artist Ms Rosalind Fanning from the Tin Jug Studio in Birr, the students have documented their work in a unique publication called "HBA 10 @ Banagher".

With their many new young fans, the old boats of the fleet of the Heritage Boat Association are assured a warm welcome in Banagher in the decades ahead.

Published in Inland Waterways
GPS maker Garmin has announced a new Inland Waterways Ireland product, available as a download for boating enthusiasts on the Shannon Navigation.

The Inland Waterways Ireland download is the first boating product developed for the Shannon Navigation compatible with all Garmin mapping compatible recreational and marine devices.

It allows the user to search for points of interest (POIs) as well as build routes automatically or manually on the Shannon Navigation network.

POIs include marinas, geographic named places, lakes and much more. The Inland Waterways Ireland product also features locks, jetties, fishing locations as well as lake and river shorelines.

If you fancy getting this download to explore this beautiful part of Ireland yourself go HERE.

Published in Inland Waterways
Tagged under
Next Sunday, May 29, Commodore's Day will be celebrated at Foynes Yacht Club. This sailing day is very special in the annals of the Cooleen Point based club, because it has been celebrated for the last 49 years.

Commodore Tom Murray has a host of events planned for the day, racing will take place in the harbour area starting at 2pm. This is for all classes, Class 1, 2, White Sails and Mermaids. The junior members of the club will be sailing the Topaz dinghies.

It is hoped to have a live commentary of the racing from the clubhouse, to let the onlookers know what is happening on the water.

After racing the annual blessing of the boats will be performed by Canon O'Keeffe and Fr. Noonan, this will take place on the marina approximately at 4pm.

When the blessing of the boats is over, member's are asked to retire to the clubhouse for a Bar-b-Que and a traditional Irish music session, which will commence at 5pm.

The Foynes Irish Coffee Festival is back this year. The club is hosting a 'Fun Day', on Sunday, June 5 at 2pm. More details on this will follow next week.

The Waterways Ireland Inter-Counties Sailing Championships will be taking place on the Grand Canal Dock on Sunday, June 26.
A fleet of one-design keel boats will be provided, and a series of sprint sailing races of 15-20 minutes leading to the final.

A team from the club, which is spear-headed by Donal McCormack, includes Elaine O'Mahoney and John-Paul Buckley, Donal has a vacant place on the team, so any member who would like to participate are asked to contact the secretary, Elaine on 086 1231864. As far as Foynes Yacht Club are aware only one team representing the Shannon Estuary will be competing.

Published in Shannon Estuary
Tagged under

A north-easterly force 3 wind accompanied the flotilla of yachts that set out from Foynes Yacht Club, who sailed to Limerick city on Saturday afternoon to participate in the Riverfest celebrations.

Daniel Butler co-ordinator took members of the Northside We're Ok youth group from Moyross, who experienced another view of Limerick from the river. John Prendergast and his wife, Maureen, were guests of the club on this cruise.

The yacht's that journeyed were Mweeloon, Whyte Dolphin, Alphara, Inizi, Mariposa, Lady Shanannah, Hello, Kilteery, Kerry Dream, Battle, Dexterity, Coral Dos and Blue Ribbon. Unfortunately, Marengo had to turn back at Aughinish because of engine trouble, the skipper, Pat Finucane and crew changed boats and were transported on on Ger Reidy's, Kilteery.

The sun shone all the way for the sight-seeing journey up this magnificent of stretch of water. The Islands on the Shannon Estuary Cannon and Horseshoe are one of the first sights that can be seen on this stretch of the river. The bauxite smelting factory, Aughinish Alumina and the famous Beeves Rock lighthouse, no more in use gives an added pictureesque setting to this journey.

Further on the right-hand side the entrance into the Deel Boat Club in Askeaton can be seen on the the same shore the pre-Norman Beagh Castle is standing overlooking the Shannon. Ringmoylan, and Pallaskenry can be seen down a mile from the castle, and opposite Rineanna with the famous Shannon Airport, who hosted several US President's who stopped off to visit this country.

As we continued our journey up river the landmark, Carrigagonnell Castle is visible, also the giant chimneys of the Cement factory in Mungret and the giant-sized structure of Thomond Park.

Nearer to the city Riverpoint and the Clarion Hotel, two of the tallest buildings in Limerick, rise up to the blue sky and sunshine of May.

When the flotilla approached the Clarion Hotel, they berthed for an hour to give the public a chance to see these water vessels in their bunting and memorabilia.

After the inspections were it was into Limerick Docks for an overnight stay, and then on to Dolan's Bar and Restaurant for a much sought-after meal.

On Sunday afternoon the junior members of the club, Ailish Chawke, Claire Lowes, Ciara McCormack, Mary McCormack and Anna Lowes gave a display of sailing kayaks and Topaz boats at Howley's Quay to an array of spectators, who came to see the other craft on the water, Jet-Ski's and Clark Clifford's rib who gave the public a trip up and down the Shannon. Members of the yacht club also gave out flyers promoting Foynes Yacht Club.

When the sailing adventures were over it was time to head back down river to Cooleen Point, where a Bar-b-Que followed in the Clubhouse the sailors and their families. Overall, the reaction from everybody was excellent!

Club racing continus every Wednesday evening with first gun at 7pm. On Saturday, May 14 and Sunday, May 15 the Estuary Bell will be raced in Foynes. Two races on Saturday and one of Sunday are pencilled in.

Published in Shannon Estuary
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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