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Latest Environment Stories
Kish Bank Oil Prospect: Green Party representatives Una Power and Sinead Mercier protesting in the Forty Foot, Sandycove on south Dublin Bay. Dalkey is another coastal suburb where Dublin Bay meets Killiney Bay.
#DublinBayOil - The Dublin Bay suburb of Sandycove writes Dublin Gazette could be affected by offshore oil drilling that would damage local “delicate habitats”, according to local Green Party reps. Una Power, Green Party Representative for Killiney-Shankill is calling on…
Northern Ireland’s fishery marine research vessel, R.V. Corystes seen in Belfast Lough. The 53m ship also undertakes fishery eco-system management as required by the EU Commission, is currently in Cork Dockyard for dry-docking. On occasions, the 1,280grt ship has during surveys docked in Dublin Port, where an opportunity arose to visit on board took place in the mid-2000’s when berthed at Sir John Rogersons Quay, close to the capital’s centre.
#FishingBrexit - Northern Ireland’s fishery and marine science research vessel RV Corystes (1988/1,280grt) is an unusual caller to Cork Dockyard having arrived mid-month from the ship’s homeport of Belfast, writes Jehan Ashmore. The UK flagged RV Corystes has been monitored…
Kilronan Harbour, Inishmore (Inis Mór) the largest of the three Aran Islands. Residents have welcomed in the securing of a new five-year ferry service contract with Aran Ferries Teo.
#IslandNews - A new five-year ferry contract from residents on the Aran Islands has been welcomed, as the deal will guarantee daily services to each of the three islands. Details of the Public Service Obligation contract reports RTE News were…
EU officials at this week's meeting to launch "Women in Transport" a new platform aimed at strengthening employment and equal opportunities for both women and men in the transport sector.
#WomenInTransport - The EU Commission and the Economic and Social Committee launched on Monday a new platform aiming at strengthening Women’s employment and equal opportunities for men and women in the transport sector. Only 22% of the people working in…
One of the beaked whales spotted breaching by the scientist crew on the RV Celtic Voyager earlier this month
#MarineWildlife - A team of scientists on board the RV Celtic Voyager got more than they bargained for during a recent survey to understand the habitat use of elusive beaked whales. That’s when they encountered four separate groups of breaching…
Connemara ‘Marine Innovation Park’ Preps New Planning Application
#MarineScience - A new planning application is set to be submitted for the proposed ‘marine innovation park’ in Connemara, as Galway Bay FM reports. Páirc na Mara is envisaged as a low-carbon marine industry hub over nine hectares, with a…
European Association Of Fish Pathologists To Host Third Meeting In Galway Next September
#MarineScience - Following on from the successful conferences in Keele (2014) and Stirling (2016), the Marine Institute in Galway will host the third meeting of the European Association Of Fish Pathologists (EAFP) on 11-12 September 2018. ‘Connecting academia with industry…
An architect's image of the Maritime Museum & Archive Centre in Derry would look like in the Waterside area of the city
#MaritimeMuseum - A decision by the Department of Infrastructure (Dfi) to finally approve plans for a Maritime Museum at Ebrington will hasten the completion of a major tourist draw in the heart of Derry, according to local politicians who have…
Marine Minister Michael Creed with Marine Institute chief executive Peter Heffernan, chairman John Killeen and Paul Connolly, director of fisheries ecosystems advisory services, at the presentation of the annual Stock Book for 2017
#Fishing - Marine Minister today (Tuesday 28 November) received the Marine Institute’s annual Stock Book for 2017. The Stock Book, one of the principal annual publications of the Marine Institute, provides the latest impartial scientific advice on commercially exploited fish…
Coney Island in Lough Neagh has a history dating back to Neolithic times
#LoughNeagh - After two decades as warden of Coney Island in Lough Neagh, Northern Ireland’s ‘Robinson Crusoe’ has sailed on, as the Belfast Telegraph reports. Peter McClelland won out over 400 applicants in 1998 for the prize position of caretaker…
Staff at Wicklow town’s The Fishman use an umbrella to coax Sammy back into the river in February 2016
#MarineWildlife - Twitter user Derek Byrne was bemused by the sight of a large seal being chased from the door of a fishmonger’s as he drove through Wicklow town on Wednesday afternoon. But for the townsfolk, Sammy the Seal has…
The much anticipated Cape Clear pontoon is now in place
Marina pontoon installation work has been installed at Cape Clear Island's North Harbour where pontoons to the value of €200,000 are now in place at the West Cork island harbour. As our pictures below show the new facility is a…
Marine Minister Michael Creed yesterday announced new funding grants which are being made in two research areas
#MarineScience - Marine Minister Michael Creed has announced the awarding of €3.3 million grant funding through the Marine Institute to research projects in specialist marine equipment and ocean law. Some 19 funding grants in total have been made in the…
Flossie (right) and friend filling bags with junk from the breakwaters in Din Laoghaire Harbour earlier this month
#DublinBay - Litter in the water is a longstanding issue in Dun Laoghaire and Sandycove — but one local schoolgirl has taken it upon herself to do something about it. Ten-year-old Flossie Donnelly started this past summer calling for volunteers…
The INFOMAR fleet
The INFOMAR programme, jointly managed by the Marine Institute and Geological Survey Ireland and funded by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment held its annual seminar in Cork (15th – 16th November), highlighting the impact and value of…
Irish Weather Buoy Network Features On RTE’s ‘Weather Live’ Tonight
#Weather - The work of the Marine Institute's Irish Weather Buoy Network will feature on RTE One's Weather Live this evening (Friday 17 November). The TV programme has filmed the redeployment of the M5 weather buoy, which broke free during…

For all you need on the Marine Environment - covering the latest news and updates on marine science and wildlife, weather and climate, power from the sea and Ireland's coastal regions and communities - the place to be is Afloat.ie.

Coastal Notes

The Coastal Notes category covers a broad range of stories, events and developments that have an impact on Ireland's coastal regions and communities, whose lives and livelihoods are directly linked with the sea and Ireland's coastal waters.

Topics covered in Coastal Notes can be as varied as the rare finding of sea-life creatures, an historic shipwreck with secrets to tell, or even a trawler's net caught hauling much more than just fish.

Other angles focusing the attention of Coastal Notes are Ireland's maritime museums, which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of our nautical heritage, and those who harvest the sea using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety pose an issue, plying their trade along the rugged wild western seaboard.

Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied as the environment they come from, and which shape people's interaction with the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

Marine Wildlife

One of the greatest memories of any day spent boating around the Irish coast is an encounter with Marine Wildlife. It's a thrill for young and old to witness seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales right there in their own habitat. And as boaters fortunate enough to have experienced it will testify, even spotting a distant dorsal fin can be the highlight of any day afloat. Was that a porpoise? Was it a whale? No matter how brief the glimpse, it's a privilege to share the seas with Irish marine wildlife.

Thanks to our location in the North Atlantic, there appears to be no shortage of marine life to observe. From whales to dolphins, seals, sharks and other ocean animals, the Marine Wildlife category documents the most interesting accounts around our shores. And we're keen to receive your observations, your photos, links and video clips, too!

Also valuable is the unique perspective of all those who go afloat, from coastal sailing to sea angling to inshore kayaking to offshore yacht racing, as what they encounter can be of great importance to organisations such as the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG). Thanks to their work we now know we share the seas with dozens of species who also call Ireland home. But as impressive as the list is, the experts believe there are still gaps in our knowledge. Next time you are out on the ocean waves, keep a sharp look out!

Weather

As an island in the North Atlantic, Ireland's fate is decided by Weather more so than many other European countries. When storm-force winds race across the Irish Sea, ferry and shipping services are cut off, disrupting our economy. When swollen waves crash on our shores, communities are flooded and fishermen brace for impact - both to their vessels and to their livelihoods.

Keeping abreast of the weather, therefore, is as important to leisure cruisers and fishing crews alike - for whom a small craft warning can mean the difference between life and death - as it is to the communities lining the coast, where timely weather alerts can help protect homes and lives.

Weather affects us all, and Afloat.ie will keep you informed on the hows and the whys.

Marine Science

Perhaps it's the work of the Irish research vessels RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of Marine Science for the future growth of Ireland's emerging 'blue economy'.

From marine research to development and sustainable management, Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. Whether it's Wavebob ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration, the Marine Science category documents the work of Irish marine scientists and researchers and how they have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

Power From The Sea

The message from the experts is clear: offshore wind and wave energy is the future. And as Ireland looks towards the potential of the renewable energy sector, generating Power From The Sea will become a greater priority in the State's 'blue growth' strategy.

Developments and activities in existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector, and those of the energy exploration industry, point to the future of energy requirements for the whole world, not just in Ireland. And that's not to mention the supplementary industries that sea power projects can support in coastal communities.

Irish ports are already in a good position to capitalise on investments in offshore renewable energy services. And Power From The Sea can even be good for marine wildlife if done properly.

Aside from the green sector, our coastal waters also hold a wealth of oil and gas resources that numerous prospectors are hoping to exploit, even if people in coastal and island areas are as yet unsure of the potential benefits or pitfalls for their communities.

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