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Displaying items by tag: Topper

Racing concluded on Sunday in the Royal Cork Yacht Club Laser and Topper Frostbite leagues with races 13,14 and 15 in bright but cold light winds under race officer Maurice Collins. Previous races in the series were overseen by Barry Rose and Rob Foster.

The league started this year with a six-race sprint event on Sunday the 7th which served as both a stand-alone event and the first 6 races in the Frostbite League.

Traditionally the prize-giving would be held at the junior laying up supper however as that has been postponed this year, Rear Admiral Dinghies Annamarie Fagan conducted the prize giving on the club lawn following racing.

Rear Admiral Dinghies Annamarie Fagan, ILCA 4 Winner Mauro G Regueral Noguerol, Laser class Captain Tim Mc CarthyRear Admiral Dinghies Annamarie Fagan, ILCA 4 Winner Mauro G Regueral Noguerol, Laser class Captain Tim Mc Carthy

Sailing in both ILCA 4 and Toppers went right down to the wire with final places changing in both on the last day.

Runner up Isabel Mc CarthyILCA 4 Runner up Isabel Mc Carthy

The overall winner in ILCA 4 was Mauro G Regueral Noguerol with Isabel Mc Carthy in second and Max Tolan third.

3rd Ilca 4 Max Tolan3rd ILCA 4 Max Tolan

Overall Topper gold fleet winner and recipient of the Bill Jones trophy presented by Brian Jones was Rowan MacSweeney with Liam Duggan second and Julie O Neill third. Andrew O'Neill won the silver fleet with Ellen Mc Donagh second and Sean Holmes third.

Royal Cork Topper Frostbite racingRoyal Cork Topper Frostbite racing

Class captains Maurice Collins (Toppers) and Tim Mc Carthy (Lasers) would like to thank all those that volunteered over the month and during the year in helping both fleets to go racing and most of all to the sailors for such a spirited series.

Published in Royal Cork YC

Racing continued on Sunday in the Royal Cork Yacht Club Laser (ILCA) and Topper Frostbite leagues with races 10,11 and 12 in bright but cold 16 knot winds under race officer Barry Rose.

In the ILCA 4 division, all three races were won by Oisín MacSweeney. In the Toppers, Liam Duggan won race 10 and Rowan MacSweeney won races 11 and 12.

The overall leader in ILCA 4 is Isabel Mc Carthy with Mauro G Regueral Noguerol in second and Max Tolan in third.

Overall, the Topper gold fleet is led by Rowan MacSweeney with Liam Duggan second and Julie O'Neill third. Andrew O'Neill is leading the silver fleet with Sean Holmes second and Ellen Mc Donagh third.

The league started this year with a six-race sprint event on Sunday the seventh which served as both a stand-alone event and the first 6 races in the Frostbite League.

A number of the Laser and Topper sailors were sailing in the team racing nationals held in the club on Saturday and Sunday but will be back for next week when the league will conclude on Saturday the 27th of November with 3 more races and prizegiving on the club lawn afterwards.

Published in Royal Cork YC

The cut short Investwise Irish Youth Sailing National Championships on Cork Harbour had produced some clear winners in five classes regardless of today's Yellow Alert weather warning at Royal Cork Yacht Club.

Five titles were divided between Dublin and Cork sailors with the host club taking two crowns, the biggest haul of any single club with the 29er and Topper titles won by local sailors.

Both Laser titles go to Dublin, with Howth Yacht Club taking the ILCA 6 and the National Yacht Club winning in the ILCA 4.

The 420 title is shared by a combined Malahide and Wexford duo.

McMahon wins ILCA 6 but Crosbie's Reinstatement Makes it Close

ILCA 6 Champion - Eve McMahon of Howth

As Afloat reported earlier, the final results from Saturday’s long day afloat weren’t initially confirmed as two titles were eventually settled ashore in the protest room this morning.

On Saturday evening, a protest by ILCA6 (Laser Radial) overall leader Eve McMahon saw the Howth Yacht Club sailor extend her lead over Michael Crosbie of the Royal Cork YC when he was disqualified from Race 10 due to a port and starboard incident.

However, the Crosshaven sailor returned to the protest room on Sunday morning to have his result reinstated as McMahon had not informed the race committee of her protest on Saturday.

McMahon still emerged as ILCA6 Youth National Champion after the tie-break with Crosbie.

O'Shaughnessy & Dwyer Lift 29er Skiff Title 

29er Champions Ben O’Shaughnessy and James Dwyer (Royal Cork YC) Photo: Bob Bateman29er Champions - Ben O’Shaughnessy and James Dwyer (Royal Cork YC) Photo: Bob Bateman

Ben O’Shaughnessy and James Dwyer (Royal Cork YC) won the 29er skiff national title by a single point as Afloat reported here after a close contest with Tim Norwood and Nathan Van Steenberge from the Royal Irish YC and National YC respectively in their eleven strong demonstration class that immediately followed a European Championships campaign on Lake Garda last week.

The runners-up were also in the protest room on Sunday morning seeking redress for equipment failure in their second race of the series on Friday but their submission was ruled out of time.

Collins top Toppers, Newcomer Ledoux Wins 4.7s

Rian CollinsTopper Champion - Rian Collins of Royal Cork Photo: Bob Bateman

As Afloat reported earlier, Crosshaven’s Rian Collins won the 38-boat Topper class with a 12-point lead over his clubmate Dan O’Leary taking the runner-up place in their seven-race series. Bobby Driscoll's third overall kept the Belfast Lough Topper flag flying.

Sam Ledoux of the National YCILCA 4 Champion - Sam Ledoux of the National YC Photo: Bob Bateman

The Topper fleet shared the same course as the ILCA4 (Laser 4.7) class, the second largest of the event with 31 boats where a newcomer to the class, Sam Ledoux of the National YC, emerged youth national champion. 

Five wins Give McDowell & Thompson the 420 Title

420  champions - Jack McDowell and Henry Thompson Photo: Bob Bateman420 champions - Jack McDowell and Henry Thompson Photo: Bob Bateman

The Malahide and Wexford Harbour pairing of Jack McDowell and Henry Thompson continued their three-day lead of the 420 class to win comfortably as Afloat reports here over Eoghan Duffy with Conor Paul of Lough Ree YC in a disappointingly small nine boat class.

Published in Youth Sailing

On Saturday, Royal Cork's own Rian Collins grip on the Topper fleet continued on the third day of racing at the Investwise Youth Sailing Nationals at Royal Cork Yacht Club.

After seven races sailed, the host club ace extended his lead by two points in the biggest fleet of the championships in a scoreline that includes three race wins.

The 38-boat fleet had a long day on the water in a bid to complete racing before strong winds set in on Cork Harbour on Sunday. 

The fleet spent at least six hours on the water with racing delayed waiting for breeze to arrive. 

Third overall Bobby Driscoll of Belfast Lough at a weather mark on the third day of the Topper Class Youth Nationals in Cork HarbourThird overall Bobby Driscoll of Belfast Lough at a weather mark on the third day of Topper dinghy class Youth Nationals racing in Cork Harbour Photo: Bob Bateman

Collins's clubmate Dan O'Leary stays second, having equally built up his points cushion over chasing Northern Ireland sailor Bobby Disrcoll from Belfast Lough in third place. Results below.

Subject to weather, racing will conclude on Sunday afternoon. 

Update Sunday 09.24: Due to current wind conditions and forecast, the race committee has decided to cancel sailing for the day. Prizegiving at 10 am in the marquee

Topper: Sailed: 7, Discards: 1, To count: 6, Entries: 38Topper: Sailed: 7, Discards: 1, To count: 6, Entries: 38

 

Published in Topper

Topper sailor Rian Collin of the host club leads the biggest fleet of the youth sailing national championships at Royal Cork Yacht Club.

After three races sailed, Collins, on four points, leads clubmate Dan O'Leary by an impressive ten points. 

Howth's Ciara McMahon took third place in the 38-boat fleet on 17 points, some six points ahead of Northern Ireland Topper champion Bobby Driscoll of Royal Northern Ireland Yacht Club.

The 38-boat Topper fleet was racing on the Curlane Bank courseThe 38-boat Topper fleet was racing on the Curlane Bank course

Topper : Sailed: 3, Discards: 0, To count: 3, Entries: 38Topper : Sailed: 3, Discards: 0, To count: 3, Entries: 38

Published in Topper
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That's the thing about an unstable weather system – testing conditions in Belfast Lough, which threatened the race programme for the Irish Topper Championships this weekend.

Hosted by Carrickfergus Sailing Club on the north shore of Belfast Lough over three days - Friday 20th till Sunday 22nd, the event was sponsored by commercial property consultants Osborne King and supported by Mid and East Antrim Council. Over those three days, the 56 competitors in two fleets of 4.2 and 5.3 had moderate winds but an awkward chop on the Friday, persistent rain and a gusty 18-knot breeze yesterday and hardly any wind for a time on the final day. The principal Race Officer was Sheela Lewis from County Antrim, BC.

But patience paid off in the end and the breeze filled in enough from the north to run two races yesterday (22nd) to complete a nine-race event.

In the 10 boats 4.2 fleet it was Tom Driscoll of Royal North at Cultra and Ballyholme, on the south side of Belfast Lough and Callum Pollard of County Antrim YC, a few miles east of Carrickfergus, who topped the table in that order, with scores never below a 5th, which were the discards in both cases. Finishing with a flourish and a first place was local girl Chloe Craig assuring her of third overall.

Toppers prepare to launch at Carrickfergus's new slipwayToppers prepare to launch at Carrickfergus's new slipway

There were 56 competitors in two Topper fleets of 4.2 and 5.3There were 56 competitors in two Topper fleets of 4.2 and 5.3

Top of the 46 strong 5.3 fleet was Daniel Palmer of Ballyholme, and he finished 5 points ahead of runner up Bobby Driscoll of Royal North and Ballyholme. Up until the final race yesterday, Palmer never dropped below third, but a big fall to 16th in that race meant he needs to discard a 16. The long journey north for the Royal Cork pair, Liam Duggan and Rian Collins paid off as they took third and fourth. And it also did for Julie O'Neill from Royal Cork, who won the overall female prize having finished sixth in the 5.3 fleet.

Tom Driscoll, Irish Topper Championships 4.2 winnerTom Driscoll, Irish Topper Championships 4.2 winner

Joining the local Northern Ireland Toppers were visitors from as far away as Waterford Harbour, Malahide, Howth, Cork and Wexford. Also on the water were safety boats supplied by saferwaters.org. This is a not-for-profit service in Northern Ireland, established in 2020 to provide a Safety Boat service for water-based community events such as sailing, swimming, paddle boarding and windsurfing, which may not have safety cover of their own or may need additional resources.

Assistant Race Officer Gavin Pollard was very pleased with how the event turned out; "Despite the challenging range of wind conditions over the three days, the championship ran very well with all races upheld with minimal recall!"

Published in Topper
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It was worth the wait for Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough to stage a full-on Topper Northern Ireland Championships over the past weekend.

Sixty-nine young sailors came from the length and breadth of Ireland; from Royal Cork and Waterford in the south and Galway in the West, and even from the south of England to compete within this exciting two-day event. There was racing for two divisions, the 4.2 fleet and the 5.3 Toppers in what turned out to be, weather-wise, completely contrasting conditions on each day. And many of the fleet were first-time competitors.

Winning the 4.2 fleet was Callum Pollard from County Antrim Yacht Club in Whitehead on the north shore of Belfast Lough and Bobby Driscoll, (son of Ireland's 1996 Olympian competitor) in a 5.3 from Royal North, Ballyholme and Strangford Lough Yacht Club, was the overall winner.

The lack of a steady breeze on the Saturday forced Race Officer Commodore Aidan Pounder to postpone racing but he managed to get two completed. The next day had completely different conditions with a strong and eventually rain-laden westerly giving some hair-raising racing in a breaking sea, among sailors most of whom seemed to be able to cope with anything. But the rain has no friends among the Race Committee and having postponed the fifth race due to bad visibility when it cleared, they ironically had to abandon it due to increased winds.

Bobby Driscoll (47521) and Daniel PalmerBobby Driscoll (47521) and Daniel Palmer

In the 54 strong 5.3 fleet, Driscoll and Daniel Palmer from BYC, both Juniors, showed consistency throughout the racing and ended on equal nett points, with the tie split in Driscoll's favour. Driscoll counted two firsts and a second and Palmer the same. Driscoll also won the prize for Ist Junior Male. In the third slot was Liam Duggan from Royal Cork and he also took the prize for 1st Youth Male. In the same fleet fourth-placed Julie O'Neill, also from Royal Cork, took home the prize for 1st Youth Female and Ciara McMahon from Howth and National lifted the prize for 1st Junior Female.

In the 15 strong 4.2 fleet Callum Pollard counted a first and two seconds to finish three points ahead of Tom Driscoll of Royal North and Ballyholme, with Tyler Playfair of Carrickfergus SC third with the same score.

Bobby Driscoll, Topper NI ChampionBobby Driscoll, Topper NI Champion

Callum Pollard  Topper 4.2 NI ChampionCallum Pollard, Topper 4.2 NI Champion

Ballyholme Commodore Aidan Pounder was delighted with the success of the event: "With the pandemic forcing the cancellation of the ITCA GBR Nationals this year, Ballyholme Yacht Club (BYC) approached Topper Ireland about hosting an event as restrictions eased.  Over the last few weeks, members of BYC have been very busy putting together 'The Topper Northern Ireland Championships' and were hopeful of a good turnout, given the problems Covid-19 has presented in hosting events. On Saturday we had 69 Toppers take to the water in Belfast Lough for Race 1, a makeup of 15 sailors in the 4.2 class and 54 sailors in the 5.3 class. From a BYC perspective in the competitor make up, BYC Cadets accounted for 10 in the 4.2 fleet and 24 in the 5.3 fleet, a truly fantastic figure and testament to the success of our Cadet programme driven by David Nelson and Colin Robinson. For a lot of these cadets, it was their first event, and they had everything to contend with, from very light wind on Saturday to 22 kts of breeze on the Sunday.

All the competitor sailors did remarkably well with the conditions. I was absolutely delighted to see so many Cadets from both the South and North competing, clearly demonstrating how strong our Cadet sailing is on the island of Ireland, and the great support the families have shown to sailing. I very much hope that it won't be long before we see a return to European and World events in our great sailing waters in Northern Ireland".

Published in Topper

Royal Cork Yacht Club congratulated the rescheduled Astra Construction Topper 'Winter' Championships winner at Crosshaven yesterday evening after two full days of competition on the Curlane Bank in Cork Harbour.

As Afloat reported earlier, after four races sailed on Saturday, the host club's Liam Duggan lead the 69 boat 5.3 fleet and on Sunday's two races the RCYC youth extended this lead to six points over clubmate Rian Collins.

Third overall was Ballyholme YC visitor Daniel Palmer from Belfast Lough.

In the much smaller seven boat 4.2 fleet, Riain O'Neill overhauled Hugo Boyd of Ballyholme YC overnight to take the title.

Organisers chose to sail one extra race on Saturday as permitted in the sailing instructions to give the 76 boat fleet a full day on the water in some great Cork Harbour sailing breezes. 

Two races were sailed on Sunday in a light southerly breeze to bring the number of races sailed to six overall. The smooth operation afloat, however, did not stop a number of racing protests before the final results could be announced.

Full results are here

Royal Cork's Annamarie Fegan, Rear Admiral Dinghies and Maurice Collins, Class Captain of the RCYC Toppers along with PRO Richard Leonard presented the prizes.

See day one racing report and photo gallery here. Day two racing and prizegiving galleries are below

RCYC Astra Topper Championships Day Two Racing Photo gallery by Bob Bateman

RCYC Astra Topper Championships 2021 Prizegiving Photo gallery by Bob Bateman

Published in Topper

Royal Cork Yacht Club may have had to cancel its planned Topper World Championships scheduled for next month due to COVID but the Astra Construction Topper 'Winter' Championships at the Crosshaven club is just the ticket for 76 Topper youth sailors in Cork Harbour this weekend.

After four races sailed on Saturday, the host club's Liam Duggan leads the 69 boat 5.3 Fleet. Duggan has a three-point cushion over clubmate Rian Collins. Lying third is Royal North of Ireland's Bobby Driscoll. 

In the much smaller seven boat 4.2 fleet, Hugo Boyd of Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough leads overall.

Full results are here

Astra Topper Championships Photo Gallery By Bob Bateman

Published in Topper

Donaghadee Sailing Club on the north County Down coast heard the first gun fired in the Topper Northern Championships on Saturday 3rd July with a sense of relief and excitement.

Race Officer Aidan Pounder, Commodore of Ballyholme YC, assisted by Colin Loughead of Royal Ulster, sent the 37 competitors off for the first of three races on the first day, having waited for the breeze to fill in. The strong tide in the Sound off Donaghadee gave the sailors trouble resulting in general recalls, but all three races were completed successfully.

The Topper Northern Championships get underway at Donaghdee Sailing ClubThe Topper Northern Championships get underway at Donaghdee Sailing Club

Not like the following day when racing was abandoned in the early afternoon due to rolling fogbanks, so despite trying to run a fourth race which would have given a discard, three had to suffice.

For Rian Collins of Royal Cork, the long haul north was worthwhile for he lifted the overall first prize with Daniel Palmer of Ballyholme runner up.

Rian Collins of RCYC (left) was the overall winner of the Topper Northerns pciturd here with Donaghedee Sailing Club Brian LennoxRian Collins of RCYC (left) was the overall winner of the Topper Northerns pciturd here with Donaghedee Sailing Club Brian Lennox

With prizes galore for the two divisions, the spoils were relatively well spread around the country.

Tyler Playfair of Carrickfergus won the 4.2s in Belfast Lough with Ballyholme's Hugo Boyd second. Ella Fitzgerald of National YC and Sutton Dinghy Club took the 5.3 prizes, followed by Eve McDonagh of Ballyholme. Junior Male went to Rian Collins, with Palmer runner up and

Junior Female to Autumn Halliday of Strangford Lough YC with Isobel Nixon of Ballyholme runner up. Toby Hughes (Royal North and Ballyholme) won Youth Male with Max Killiner also from Royal North second.

Brian Lennox, Commodore of Donaghadee SC, was delighted that the event could be held at his club; "I am delighted to see so many dinghies back in the Harbour after such a long break due to Covid. Thanks to all the volunteers who made this event a fantastic occasion".

Published in Topper
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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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