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Displaying items by tag: naval service

A member of the Naval Service has died after a tragic accident in West Cork in the early hours of yesterday morning.
Gardai are treating the death of the 34-year-old who fell in to the sea at Schull as an accident. The Irish Times has more on the tragic accident HERE.
Published in Navy
The 2010 Cobh to Blackrock Race on Saturday was an outstanding success and no bigger compliment could be paid than to say it was reminiscent of the event some twenty years ago as it had approximately 100 boats on the water writes Claire Bateman. The day was a scorcher with cloudless blue skies and while the wind may have been a little flukey, nonetheless the flotilla of mixed classes of all descriptions with happy families on board were determined to make the best of the wonderful day on the water. The flotilla was accompanied by many RIBS and practically any other sort of craft one could think of.

The racing was started from the beautiful Ketch Soubrette from the Naval Service Yacht Squadron Cove S.C. First off were the slow dinghies and the white sail and classic yachts and these presented no problem to the Race Officer. However, when it came to the turn of the cruisers, with a strong flood tide they charged the line, and a general recall ensued. The Race Officer then proceeded to start the J80s before having another attempt at the cruisers Zero to Class Four. This time a Z flag was flown and anyone over the line in the final minute would have a 20% penalty applied. Happily, all went well on this occasion with a clean start and although the breeze was light and flukey all boats managed to make the finish at Blackrock Castle before the time limit. The finishing boat was a former Aran Class Lifeboat, the Samuel J and the first boat to reach the line was Jim Sheerin of Royal Cork Yacht Club in his Catamaran, narrowly beating Eddie English in the Holy Grounder from Sail Cork. In days gone by Eddie used always be first to the finish line in his yellow Hobie. Happy memories!

The event played a big part in the Port of Cork Open Day and for the first time the race had the benefit of the Port of Cork City Marina. When the boats had completed the race at Blackrock Castle they proceeded right up to the city for the prize giving and other festivities planned. All the local towns and villages in and around Cork had events planned for the Open Day and what a difference to last year when the event was completely washed out.

What a coup for Cove Sailing Club with the wonderful reinvigoration of this much loved event. One of the nice things about this is that young children were to be seen sailing with their parents and being given the opportunity to helm all types of craft from Catamarans to Cruisers. It was that kind of event and a wonderful way to get youngsters interested in sailing and fostering a love of the sport.

Photos of the event on the Afloat Gallery HERE

Published in Cork Harbour

The Minister for Defence, Mr. Tony Killeen, TD, with his cabinet colleague the Minister for Finance, Mr. Brian Lenihan, TD, were today, at the Naval Service Base in Haulbowline, Cork to welcome home the Naval Service vessel the L.E. Niamh from her ten week mission to Latin America.

This deployment was in support of the strong cultural and heritage links between Ireland and South America, to mark the celebration of the bicentenaries of independence by Mexico, Argentina, and Chile, and to promote Ireland and Irish trade links in these countries.

The Captain of the LE Niamh is Lieutenant Commander Kenneth Minehane, a native of Bantry, Co. Cork, and there were 46 crew on the mission.

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LE Niamh arrives back into Haulbowline today. Photo: Bob Bateman

Speaking on the LE Niamh in Cork Minister Killeen said "The trade and diplomatic mission to Latin America, which was undertaken by the LE Niamh, was a significant initiative from Ireland's perspective and is an example of the continued effective inter-departmental cooperation, particularly in the area of trade. The Captain and crew of the ship have carried out excellent work on behalf of the State in furthering our national interests in the region. I would like to commend them on their achievements and thank them for their service."

Minister Killeen continued "I am delighted to be able to announce today that following discussions with my cabinet colleague Mr. Brian Lenihan, T.D., Government approval has been received for the Department of Defence and the Naval Service to enter into discussions with UK based shipbuilder Babcock Marine, with a view to finalising negotiations for the purchase of two new Naval Service Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs).

The decision to proceed with the final award of the contract to purchase the OPV's is subject to these negotiations reaching a satisfactory outcome. I hope to be in a position to make a formal announcement regarding the award of the contract for the new OPV's by November 2010. However, as you can appreciate, as negotiations are ongoing it would be inappropriate for me to comment further on them at this time except to wish the officials in the Department of Defence and the Naval Service well in these negotiations".

Minister Lenihan said "I am also pleased to be here in Haulbowline this afternoon with Minister Killeen for this major announcement. I am especially pleased that in agreeing the Defence Estimates for 2011 it has been possible to provide for this key defence priority."

The older naval ships have a nominal lifespan of 30 years. By 2015, all but two of the current flotilla of eight Naval vessels will be at least 30 years old (which is the normal maximum lifespan of such vessels). The continued use of older vessels is expensive in terms of both maintenance and, more importantly, loss of days on patrol. Notwithstanding increased inspections, maintenance and repair, it is not recommended that any vessel should remain in service beyond 35 years.

The three oldest vessels, LE Emer commissioned in 1978, LE Aoife commissioned in 1979 and LE Aisling commissioned in 1980, remain in service through a programme of continuous planned and preventative maintenance and inspections. These inspections have recently resulted in extensive repairs being carried out to all three vessels with holes in the hull plating of each being detected and repaired in the course of dry docking. All three vessels were out of service for approximately 6 weeks.

Minister Killeen added "The acquisition of two new modern vessels will ensure that the Naval Service continues to be fully equipped to carry out its day to day roles in enforcing the State's sovereign rights over our waters and our fisheries and meeting Ireland's obligations in the area of maritime safety and security and fisheries protection. I am acutely aware of the difficulties for Irish fishermen arising from the damage inflicted by over fishing of some key stocks off our coast. The Naval Service plays a significant role in helping to return these stocks to sustainability."

Published in Navy

Minister for Defence, Mr. Tony Killeen, T.D. visited the L.E. Aoife which was in Kilrush, Co. Clare, on Saturday as part of the festivities surrounding the West of Ireland Offshore Racing Association's (WIORA) Yacht Racing Championship.

The event was hosted by the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland. Photos of the event on the Afloat gallery here.

Minister Killeen was welcomed on board by the Captain of the L.E. Aoife, Lieutenant Commander Michael Kennelly, who escorted the Minister on a tour of the ship and introduced the crew to him.

The ship, which was built at Verlome Shipyard near Cobh, recently celebrated 30 years service to the State and the Minister acknowledged the many achievements that the ship has had over the years.

Minister Killeen said "I am delighted to have the L.E. Aoife here in Kilrush and to have the opportunity to come on board and meet Lieutenant Commander Kennelly and the crew. I am very impressed to hear that the L.E Aoife has steamed a total of 525,000 nautical miles in her lifetime."

The Minister continued "I know that in 1985 the L.E. Aoife led the operation that found the flight recorder, the so called "black box" from the Air India disaster off the South West Coast. The 25th anniversary of this disaster was commemorated last week"

Concluding the Minister thanked the Captain and his crew for their excellent service and wished them continued success in the future. "I would like to thank the crew for their excellent service to their country. The contribution that they make in preventing illegal fishing and drug smuggling is invaluable to the State." the Minister said

Published in Navy

The Master of a Spanish fishing vessel, the ‘Nuevo Murgados ‘ was fined and had his catch and gear confiscated by the State in a case brought before Cork Circuit Court on Tuesday 15th June 2010. Fines of €20,000 in total were imposed and forfeiture for the catch and gear amounted to €41,000. The Judge also imposed an award of €5,000 towards costs of the case. The case was the subject of a trial brought before Cork Circuit Court between the 29th of April to the 5th May 2010 whereby the defence sought to challenge the use of the new Omega Gauge in the measurement of nets. 

The ‘Nuevo Murgados’ was boarded by the Naval Service off the West Coast of Ireland on the 28th September 2009, and was subsequently inspected by Sea-Fisheries Protection Officers (SFPOs).  During the inspection, two nets were measured by the SFPOs using the Omega Gauge; the results were that nets were found to be 93.8mm and 77mm respectively which contravened EU regulation. The Master was charged with two offences including; logbook infringements -operating a net of less than 100mm whereas 100mm was recorded in the EU Logbook and retaining in excess of 20% Hake while operating a net between 55mm and 99mm.

On the 1st September 2009 the Omega Gauge was introduced as the definitive means for the measurement of the mesh size of fishing vessels operating in community waters. The Omega Gauge applies a predetermined force and calculates the average for a series of measurements ensuring consistency in measurement, whereas the preceding gauge required the inspector to apply a manual force.

Peter Whelan, Chairman of the SFPA said: “The defence in this case challenged the Omega Gauge, and in this context securing a conviction was significant. The use of the Omega Gauge has been the subject of some criticism however the outcome of this case proves the viability of the system. The Omega Gauge will provide a consistent reliable measurement for fishermen and should provide assurance for legitimate operators that the same result will be produced whenever their gear is measured. The Omega Gauge improves the methodology for mesh size measurement which will contribute to better implementation of technical conservation measures and the effectiveness of fishery management overall.”

 

Published in Fishing
22nd April 2010

Welcome to Afloat TV

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Since 2003 the team behind Afloat magazine has also been producing high-end, internationally appealing and entertaining factual documentaries on the Irish waterways. The production team are a mix of creative, technical and business people whose expertise guarantees an innovative approach to production and a high-quality finished product. The focus is on marine based programmes which entertain and educate. The work has been broadcast on RTE One and internationally on Sky Channels.

 

The Bay

Screened on RTE One in 2005.

Take a trip around the one half of Ireland's capital city you probably know the least. A new four-part documentary series, The Bay will be screened over four consecutive Wednesdays in May. Using spectacular aerial and underwater footage, the series features a combination of personality-led interviews and themes to tell the story of Dublin's unique waterway. Dublin Bay stretches over six kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine. And that's why The Bay was made. The series introduces viewers to the rich diversity of activities and personalities around the bay, while also touching on the serious environmental and political issues facing it. Find out more about the bay here.

 

The Harbour

Screened on RTE One in 2007.

It’s one of the largest natural harbours in the world – and those living near Cork Harbour insist that it’s also one of the most interesting. This was the last port of call for the most famous liner in history, the Titanic, but it has been transformed into a centre for chemical and pharmaceutical industry. Giraffe wander along its shores, from which tens of thousands of men and women left Ireland, most of them never to return. The harbour is home to the oldest yacht club in the world, and to the Irish Navy. This deep waterway has also become a vital cog in the Irish economy. ‘The Harbour’ is not a history programme, nor is it a news focus. It’s simply an exploration of this famous waterway, its colour and its characters. Find out more about the harbour here.

 

The Estuary

Screened on RTE One in 2007.

The story of the Shannon estuary might well be one of neglect, except that against the odds this waterway has become one of Ireland's greatest natural resources. Windswept, sitting on the edge of the Atlantic, often ignored by the nation. The story of the Shannon estuary might well be one of neglect, except that against the odds this waterway has become one of Ireland's greatest natural resources. A new four-part documentary series, from the makers of RTÉ's The Bay and The Harbour series, uncovers the secrets of the Shannon Estuary. From flying boats to film-making, wildlife to wind-farms, the series reveals how a 100km-stretch of the Shannon waterway has become a hotbed for innovation in Ireland. Up to 40% of Irish energy needs are met here, on the shores of a waterway that is also home to Ireland's second largest airport, a 10,000 student university and a massive cargo port. Ireland - and the world - has learned from the estuary. The first duty free shop was opened here, along with the first industrial free zone. Over the years, thousands of business and political leaders from across the globe have come to Shannon to discover its secret - in the hope that they might copy it. Long before Ireland heard of green energy, this place was producing it. Listen in to dolphin conversations beneath the Shannon's waterline. Uncover the mystery of the Ark, the church on wheels built by a priest who prayed when the tide went out. Narrated by Brenda Fricker, the series aired on Friday nights at 7.30pm on RTÉ One from May 4th 2007. Find out more about the estuary here.

 

The Navy

Screened on RTE One in 2007.

60 years of the Irish Naval Service. Celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Irish Naval Service, this 3 x half-long feature documentary shows how the Service has evolved into a multi-tasking, multi-disciplinary force. Most Irish people rarely come into contact with the Naval Service, and so are unaware of the range of activities it undertakes. This documentary provides an ideal opportunity to reveal the full extent of the Service’s duties – and the commitment of those who serve on Ireland’s fleet.

The Regattas

Screened on RTE One, 2007 and Sky Sports in 2009.

Sailing featured in RTE’s Christmas schedules this year, with the broadcast of a half-hour documentary feature on the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta 2007. The production, entitled ‘The Regatta’, was shot over four days in Dublin Bay during this year’s regatta. Made by Baily Films, the company behind earlier critically-acclaimed water-based documentaries The Bay, The Harbour, The Estuary and The Navy, it features spectacular on-board footage from a range of craft competing in the event. The Regatta takes viewers both on board the competing craft, and behind the scenes, to examine the challenges thrown up by organising such a large-scale event on the bay. The Regatta was broadcast on RTE 1 on Saturday, December 22, at 4.20pm.

IN DEVELOPMENT


Afloat TV projects at an advanced stage of development include:

The Edge of Ireland


Ireland’s attitude to the seas that surround her is one of the most curious in the world. An island nation, with more coastline than most other European nations, most of her citizens look inland.

Yet no-one in Ireland lives further than 100 kilometres from the sea, and the majority of the population are housed within 10 kilometres of the coast.

More than any other European nation, our history is written on our shores. The very first settlers clung to it, fearing to explore inland. The shores fed and sustained them, and continued to sustain communities from Malin Head to Mizen Head for the next 9,000 years.

From the fort of Dun Aengus to the fields at Carnsore Point, from Inishvickillane to Bull Island, the coastline holds a key to our understanding of Ireland and ourselves.

The Edge of Ireland will uncover that hidden history of Ireland, and explore what the future holds for our coastline. Travelling around the coast, it will use local and national experts to relate individual accounts of how the sea has connected with the land to shape a local community or the nation at large.

The six half-hour series will be presented thematically, rather than using a linear journey up and down the coastline.

CONTACT

If you're keen on promoting Ireland's waterways and would like to get involved with Afloat TV please email us here.

Published in Afloat TV
Minister for Defence Tony Killeen rejected Fine Gael calls to reverse a decision to reduce by 200 the number of days the Naval Service patrols the coast in an attempt to cut costs. Fine Gael defence spokesman Jimmy Deenihan appealed for a reversal of what he called “a very foolish decision” because of the threat of drugs and other forms of smuggling by sea. Marie O'Halloran has the story in today's Irish Times here.
Published in News Update
Page 23 of 23

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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