Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

afloat headers enivronment

Latest Environment Stories
Project To Tackle ‘Ghost Fishing’ Scourge Coming To Ireland This Summer
#Fishing - Marine wildlife worldwide continues to fall victim to ‘ghost fishing’, trapped in lost or abandoned fishing gear. The situation prompted a group of experienced divers, who often come across discarded nets and other debris, to form the Ghost…
Under the 'Northern Lights' of the Arctic Circle, Saga Pearl II which on this Valentine's Day afternoon is to depart Portsmouth, UK on a 15-night cruise including whale-watching off Norway. AFLOAT adds the small cruiseship of 18,581grt is currently at the same berth previously occupied by a heavy-lift crane barge as depicted in today's FerryNews piece: 'Investment of £1bn to boost UK ferry industry'
#CruiseLiners - On this Valentine’s Day the yacht-like cruiseship Saga Pearl II is due to depart Portsmouth International Port (PIP) at 17.00 this afternoon to see the Northern Lights in Norway. It won’t just be guests on board hoping to see…
The Shannon Dolphin Centre in Kilrush
#MarineScience - The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group’s Shannon Dolphin Project is seeking research assistants from May-September 2018 based in Kilrush, Co Clare. Research assistants will be required to conduct monitoring surveys from dolphin-watching tour boats, spend a considerable amount…
The MaRei Centre in Ringaskiddy
#MarineScience - Applications are invited for the post of Senior Post-Doctoral Researcher to join the MaREI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy in University College Cork (UCC), based at the Beaufort Building in Ringaskiddy. MaREI is a key research centre…
Dog’s Bay in Connemara, with its distinctive white sand
#MarineScience - This Friday 16 February is the deadline for applications to the Hardiman PhD Scholarships — and if beaches and coastal research are your passion, NUI Galway lecturer Eugene Farrell wants you to get in touch. High achievers with…
‘It’s a varied and exciting career’ says IFI senior research officer Dr Fiona Kelly
#MarineScience - Today, Sunday 11 February, Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) is marking International Day of Women and Girls in Science by highlighting the key role that women play in the organisation. According to UN Secretary-General António Guterres: “We need to…
The bow of Dutch patrol vessel Barend Biesheuvel berthed in Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The 61m 'Kustwacht' /coastguard vessel is visiting the port this weekend, however will not be open to the public. The patrol craft can be easily observed from the public plaza beside the disused ferry terminal.
#DublinBay - An unusual visitor to Dun Laoghaire Harbour is a Dutch patrol vessel not to be confused with their navy but belongs to the coastguard service, writes Jehan Ashmore. The 61m patrol vessel Barend Biesheuvel operated by the Netherlands…
Tory Island’s 150 inhabitants will be served by a 40-year-old ferry come April
#IslandNews - Residents of Tory Island opposed to the introduction of a 40-year-old vessel for their only ferry service to the mainland are set to take their protest to the Dáil next week. As previously noted on Afloat.ie, residents were…
Rigs like the Blackford Dolphin have been used for offshore exploration in Irish waters
#Oil&Gas - Cher has backed a bill to ban offshore drilling for oil and gas in Irish waters that passed its first vote in the Dáil yesterday (Thursday 8 February). Using the hashtag #HellToTheYes, the pop music legend threw her…
A juvenile basking shark, a species vulnerable to commercial trawling and gill netting
#MarineWildlife - Basking sharks, stingrays and seaweeds are among nearly 50 species of marine flora and fauna faced with extinction in Ireland’s waters, according to a new report from the Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT). Protecting Our Ocean Wealth outlines the…
The 65.5m research vessel RV Celtic Explorer when in drydock at A&P yard in Falmouth,Cornwall. The refit in the UK dockyard started in mid-December 2017 and works were completed this month.
#MarineScience - Research vessel RV Celtic Explorer of the Marine Institute, is off to a renewed start in 2018, after undergoing a major refit. The Romanian-Dutch built ship is ready to accommodate 18 scientific surveys throughout the year. The five-year…
From March 1, as part of new animal protection reforms, it will be illegal for restaurants to throw live lobsters into the pot in Switzerland
Switzerland has banned the practice of boiling lobsters alive. From March 1, as part of new animal protection reforms, it will be illegal for restaurants to throw live lobsters into the pot. Only an electric shock or the ‘mechanical destruction’…
Dr Colm Lordan joined the Marine Institute in 1998
#MarineScience - Dr Colm Lordan of Fisheries Ecosystems Advisory Services at the Marine Institute has been appointed as one of the Vice Chairs of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) Advisory Committee. The ICES Advisory Committee…
If the Bill passes, Ireland will become only the third country in the world to implement a ban on the exploration of fossil fuels, after France and Costa Rica.
#MarineEnvironment - A ban on any new explorations for oil, coal, and gas on Irish territory is through a Bill about to appear before the Dail early next month. The Climate Emergency Measures Bill writes GreenNews.ie, seeks to stop the…
Full-scale demonstration of a new aeration technology for fish farms
#Aquaculture - Researchers in Galway and Athlone are leading a project to identify technologies that can improve the management of freshwater fish farming and reduce its impact on the environment. As Green News reports, the teams at NUI Galway and…
The RV Celtic Explorer will carry out the survey between 19 February and 19 March
#IAMS2018 - The annual Irish Anglerfish and Megrim Survey for 2018 (IAMS 2018) will be carried out between Monday 19 February and Monday 19 March off the West, Southwest and South Coasts of Ireland, in fulfilment of Ireland’s Common Fisheries…

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.

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

DBSC
Howth Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

corkweek sidebutton
tokyo sidebutton
roundireland sidebutton
wave regatta

Featured Chandleries

chmarine sidebutton
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating