Displaying items by tag: Blue Economy
Chief executive Dr Peter Heffernan is representing the Marine Institute at European Maritime Day 2019 in Lisbon, Portugal this week.
Concluding today, Friday 17 May, European Maritime Day is one of the largest marine science and policy meetings of the year.
The 2019 programme focuses on blue entrepreneurship, research, innovation and investment to transform traditional maritime sectors and boost emerging technologies.
Dr Heffernan said the Marine Institute “plays a crucial role in supporting, co-ordinating and promoting marine research at a national and international level.
“By working alongside academic institutions in Ireland, and participating in and leading research partnerships, the institute is able to increase our knowledge of the ocean which will assist in the sustainable management and development of our marine resource.”
The Galway Statement, signed at the Marine Institute in 2013, provided the first step in forming the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance (AORA) between the European Union, Canada and the United States of America.
AORA aims to promote a healthier Atlantic Ocean, find more sustainable ways to use its resources and increase people’s awareness and literacy surrounding the ocean.
“AORA is science diplomacy at work,” Dr Heffernan said. “Transatlantic cooperation has been instrumental to the success of AORA and creating a strong Atlantic community.
“Within five years, scientific research teams working together in the Atlantic have unearthed new discoveries and knowledge in the areas of seabed mapping, ocean observation, climate and polar research, and marine biotechnology.”
The programme covers almost all aspects of marine science, technology and policy, and encourages participants to engage with partners from the EU community to exchange information.
The 2020 European Maritime Day annual meeting will be hosted by Cork City Council, which will mark the first time Ireland has hosted the event.
Robotics, Internet of Things and data analytics are set to play a key role in Ireland's blue economy, according to the Marine Institute.
The national funding agency for the marine research industry recently awarded financial investments in two marine technology projects led by Xocean and IDS Monitoring.
Louth-based marine technology firm Xocean has been awarded €199,739 in funding over two years to transform marine monitoring and data collection.
The company uses innovative robotics, particularly unmanned vehicles, and IoT technology to monitor and collect data at sea.
Elsewhere, a new smart data buoy project by Clare-based IDS Monitoring will also benefit from a €196,955 funding grant, to develop a new smart buoy for coastal and inshore environmental monitoring.
The new IDS Buoy will make it easier to assemble, deploy and use buoys, as well as reducing purchase costs and maintenance, whilst enhancing the value of the information delivered through the smart buoy.
Recently announced by the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine, the industry-led awards support Ireland's Integrated Marine Plan, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, as well as the national Marine Research and Innovation Strategy 2017-2021.
“Supporting Irish companies in the marine sector, through research grants, helps to accelerate innovation and drive growth in our blue economy,” said Marine Institute chief executive Dr Peter Heffernan.
“The Marine Institute is committed to assisting industry-led development through knowledge transfer, capacity building and research to enable optimal decision making and planning to best leverage our natural marine resources sustainably and efficiently.
“Both advanced technology research projects funded through the Marine Institute have the potential to be globally significant, and present enormous commercial opportunities for these Irish marine enterprises.
“Increased economic growth and job creation from small and medium sized enterprises based in Ireland is a key component of several national strategies and regional development plans.
“These awards will be carried out with the support of the Marine Institute under the Marine Research Programme 2014-2020 funded by the Irish Government, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund.”
Marine Minister Michael Creed TD has announced that the Marine Institute is to provide 12 marine businesses (in collaboration with five universities) with investment funding totaling €2.4 million over three years.
Read the full allocation of the grant recipients here
The funding is being provided to drive continued innovation in Ireland;s ocean economy, a key requirement of the Marine Institute-led National Marine Research and Innovation Strategy 2017-2021.
The 12 grants of up to €200,000 each, which are being provided to individual companies and company-led consortia, will support novel R&D and the development of new technologies in key growth areas such as marine engineering, renewable energy and the blue bioeconomy.
“Indigenous small and medium enterprises are identifying new commercial opportunities across a range of marine sectors which can lead to economic growth and new jobs. These industry-led awards provide the opportunity for companies to build their R&D capacity and to innovate towards new products and processes.
“I look forward to seeing the 12 successful companies develop and grow their businesses with the support of this significant public investment funding.”
Marine Institute chief executive Dr Peter Heffernan added: “The Marine Institute is committed to assisting industry-led development through knowledge transfer, capacity building, research and innovation. This investment in industry-led research is a key deliverable of the Marine Institute Strategic Plan 2018-2022: Building Ocean Knowledge, Delivering Ocean Services.
“Job creation in the marine sector is increasing as a result of such investment and Irish marine companies have built an excellent reputation internationally for innovation and best practice. The 12 companies receiving funding through this funding call have demonstrated the demand and capability to fuel further growth through marine research.”
Increased economic growth and job creation from small and medium-sized enterprises based in Ireland is a key component of several national strategies and regional development plans. These awards will be carried out with the support of the Marine Institute under the Marine Research Programme 2014-2020 funded by the Government, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
A diverse range of companies applied to the Marine Institute, following the launch of its industry-led call in May 2018.
Awards have been approved for companies operating in a range of marine sectors including companies such as SolarMarine Energy (€195,465 for a floating solar hybrid energy project), Gavin & Doherty Geosolutions (€199,957 for a morphodynamic study of the Irish Sea), Subsea Micropiles (€199,902 for development of micropile technology in subsea environments), Marine Materials Ltd (€199,816 for its Eureka-SeaWind offshore wind energy project), Exceedence Ltd (€199,532 for its inline gator for aquaculture), w1Da Experience (€198,763 for its marine EcoPowa project) and Resolute Marine (€199,955 for its oscillating wave surge converter design).
Bioresources processing company Bio-marine Ingredients Ltd, was awarded €200,000 for the development of marine functional food to support healthy ageing in older adults, while advanced technologies companies Xocean Ltd (€199,739 for fisheries surveys using ‘swarms’ of unmanned vessels) and IDS Monitoring (€196,275 for its ‘smart buoy’ project), and marine engineering companies Technology from Ideas (€199,960 for the Aquamoor sustainable mooring for shellfish and seaweed) and Ocean Energy (€195,565 for engineering advanced material for marine energy and aquaculture) were also successful in their funding applications.
Nineteen postgraduates presented their marine research highlighting the innovation and contributions being made towards the growth of the marine sector in Ireland at the Cullen Fellowship Programme’s two-day annual meeting last week.
Dr Peter Heffernan, chief executive of the Marine Institute which hosted the meeting in Oranmore, had particular praise for Philip Stephens of NUI Galway and James Fahy of University College Dublin, who recently completed their respective Master’s degrees in Science.
“The graduates and other Fellows’ high level of accomplishments are welcomed in Ireland, particularly when the ocean sector is one of the fastest areas of economic growth, outpacing progress in the general economy in recent years,” Dr Heffernan said.
The Cullen Fellowship Programme has provided grant aid to the value of €1.9 million supporting 24 PhD and three Master’s students in their research over the last four years.
This has involved 15 research themes identified in the National Marine Research & Innovation Strategy 2017-2021, ranging from marine technology and fisheries management to oceanographic research, aquaculture, fish health, food safety, seabed mapping, marine technology, shipping and maritime transport, marine environment, marine economics, law and policy, education and outreach.
“We are extremely pleased with the high calibre of skilled marine researchers that have been involved with the Cullen Fellowship in recent years,” said Martina Maloney of the Marine Institute’s research funding office.
“The opportunities that the students have gained has helped further support the Government’s national Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth strategy in developing a thriving maritime economy, building healthy marine ecosystems and creating engagement with the sea.”
The growth of Ireland’s ocean economy in 2017 had a direct impact of €5.5bn turnover employing over 32,000 people. The Government investment in the ocean economy is on track to double the value of Our Ocean Wealth to 2.4% of GDP by 2030.
“Therefore, with the trend in changing economies, new forms of energy, transport and food production transforming industries, companies and jobs in the near future, it is important that we continue to invest in third level research for our next generation of marine scientists and researchers.”
The Marine Institute set up the Cullen Fellowship programme in 2014 in memory of Anne Cullen (1958-2013), who had made a significant contribution to the work of the Marine Institute over 35 years, inspiring many students through the Institute's bursary programme, encouraging students to get hands-on experience to support their study.
The Cullen Fellowships are carried out with the support of the Marine Institute and funded under the Marine Research Programme by the Government.
Cullen Fellowship opportunities will be advertised as they arise on www.marine.ie under ‘Research and Funding – Current Funding Opportunities’ and through various social media channels.
#OurOceanWeath - Employment growth of more than 16% in the marine sector was among the encouraging statistics cited by Marine Minister Michael Creed in his address to the Our Ocean Wealth Summit, which opened at Galway Docks yesterday (Thursday 28 June).
“Ireland has taken important strides in recent years in developing our blue economy. This is being driven at the highest levels of Government and represents a unique and joined up approach to growing Ireland’s blue economy.
“The work of our cross Departmental high level Marine Co-ordination Group (MCG), which I chair, will continue as we seek to build on recent success,” Minister Creed said.
Updated statistics indicate that the direct economic value of Ireland’s ocean economy now stands at €2 billion, or approximately 1% of GDP, which represents a 21% increase on 2015 figures.
“The 2017 estimates suggest that our ‘blue economy’ continues to grow at a faster pace than the general economy,” the minister added. “Growth in 2017 is being driven by strong performances in the aquaculture, sea fisheries, shipping and marine tourism industries as well as continued growth in the emerging ocean industries.
“A really encouraging statistic is the growth in employment for the marine sector which has risen from 27,888 (FTEs) in 2015 to an estimated 32,509 (FTEs) in 2017, an increase of 16.6%.”
Minister Creed also announced the publication of the latest annual Progress Report on Ireland’s Integrated Marine Plan - Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth.
“This report which covers inputs from across state departments and agencies, provides a wealth of information, spanning governance, research, education, international co-operation, business development, sustainability, and protection and conservation of marine ecosystems,” he said.
The Our Ocean Wealth Summit, now in its fifth year, forms a key part of the Government's integrated plan for Ireland’s marine sector and brings together national and international expert speakers, industry leaders, business development agencies and the Irish business and marine research community. This year’s discussions focused on the overall theme of ‘Investing in Marine Ireland’.
Ahead of the summit, PwC and the Marine Institute released the results of a joint survey of leading voices in Ireland’s maritime industry, which revealed “overwhelming confidence in Ireland’s maritime sector in spite of challenges posed by Brexit”.
Other findings include the potential of offshore wind and ocean energy, which is seen as a key opportunity for the marine sector, while overall, maritime leaders believe further investment in the marine industry is critical.
The Our Ocean Wealth Summit is part of a range of industry and innovation events taking place in Galway as part of SeaFest 2018, Ireland's national maritime festival, which opens today (Friday 29 June). A wide range of public events are taking place in Galway Harbour and Docks and the city over the weekend till Sunday 1 July.
Among them will be Life and the Sea, a special civic and military commemorative event to remember all those who have lost their lives at sea, and recognising the heroism of the men and women of our rescue services.
There will be musical performances, while poems will be read by Tony Hiney, community fundraising manager of the Western Region of the RNLI, and Lt Cdr David Fleming, Officer Commanding of the LÉ William Butler Yeats.
A lone piper will play, which will be followed by ship horns and a flyover by the Air Corps.
#MarineEconomy - Ireland's marine economy worth an annual turnover in excess of €5.7m billion, has been on a steady growth trajectory over the past decade.
Optimising, commercialising, managing and protecting this blue economy, worth over €2 billion directly to the economy each year, is the focus of the Our Ocean Wealth Summit sponsored by PwC which takes place on 28 and 29 June in Galway.
This year's Summit has attracted high level marine sector speakers from across the globe including Blue Planet producer Orla Doherty, US Astronaut and Oceanographer Kathryn Sullivan, Jose Santos, Chairman of the Oceano Azul Foundation (Portugal), Claire Jolly, Head of Ocean Economy at the OECD and Investment Manager with Equinor (Statoil) Jill Tully among other international business and marine leaders.
Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine Michael Creed T.D., Climate Justice Foundation CEO Mary Robinson, Yvonne Thompson, Partner at PwC, Julie Sinnamon of Enterprise Ireland and BIM CEO Jim O'Toole are among the Irish leaders that will address the Summit on investing in our blue economy and managing the challenges it faces.
"Being an island nation, Ireland has a real opportunity to lead in terms of innovation, competitive advantage in the seafood sector, shipping services, marine industry, renewable energy and connected marine devices and solutions. This event, as a key output of the Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth strategy, brings the vital and various elements of Ireland's marine sector, the experts and experience, together to convene, network and share knowledge required to drive forward our blue economy," said Minister for Agriculture, Food & Marine Michael Creed.
The 2 day conference will focus on Ireland's multi-billion euro marine economy, discussing the impact of Brexit, smart shipping, sea and airfreight logistics and Ireland’s seafood sector, marine renewables, marine research, maritime commerce, financial planning for the marine, climate change and more. See www.ouroceanwealth.ie
Speaking at the launch of the Our Ocean Wealth Summit themed "Investing in Marine Ireland", Marine Institute CEO Peter Heffernan said, "Ireland's oceans represent enormous commercial opportunities and this Summit will be relevant to organisations involved in offshore renewable energy, marine biotech, aquaculture and fisheries, shipping, marine mining and exploration as well as subsea and offshore technology including robotics, communications, sensors and data analytics.
We are also mindful of the need to manage this incredible blue resource to ensure its viability and health into the future. This year's Summit represents an enormous opportunity to be part of a national and international event where marine leaders will be sharing insights, networking and engaging with delegates over the 2 days of the Summit as part of the national maritime festival, SeaFest."
Our Ocean Wealth Summit has a packed agenda that includes an in-depth discussion on Ireland's seafood sector and the impact of Brexit, smart shipping, sea and airfreight and logistics for the fishing sector, an interactive session on marine renewables, as well as insights and thought leadership on climate change. Marine research and development, maritime commerce, financial planning for the marine and aviation leasing will also be topics discussed at the Summit this year.
Speaking at the 2018 launch, PwC Partner, Declan McDonald, said: "The central theme of investment for the 2018 Summit demonstrates how the integrated marine plan for Ireland is moving into a new phase of commercial engagement beyond EU and Government funding. We see this theme developing globally with many investment managers and investors actively engaged in funding projects in line with the UN sustainable development goals. We see significant activity in the ocean economy to attract investors seeking returns beyond philanthropy. PwC in Ireland and globally continues to raise awareness and support the sustainable development of the ocean economy recognising that the oceans' health and wealth are inextricably linked."
Our Ocean Wealth Summit will also include a Marine Ireland Trade Show, where over 60 companies and organisation in the sector will showcase their innovative marine products and services.
Now in its fifth year, Our Ocean Wealth Summit in association with PWC is supported by a number of partners including IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), Science Foundation Ireland, Failte Ireland, Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) and the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO).
The Summit is an output of Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, the Government's integrated plan for Ireland's marine sector, which aims to double the value of the marine economy's contribution to GDP by 2030.
See www.ouroceanwealth.ie for more details.
The EU’s 2013-2020 Atlantic Action Plan has spurred over 1,200 new maritime projects and nearly €6 billion of investments so far, according to an independent consultant tasked by the EU to take stock of the initiative at mid-term.
Most of the projects target environmental protection and innovation, as well as improved connectivity and social inclusion.
In 2013, the EU launched the Atlantic Action Plan to boost the maritime economy of its five Atlantic states: Portugal, Spain, France, the United Kingdom and Ireland, and their outermost regions.
By mid-2017, hundreds of initiatives had cropped up and started contributing to these goals, says the independent study:
500 projects are investing €2.1 billion on the environment – from developing marine renewable energy in France to novel biotechnological applications in Portugal.
- 500 projects, worth €750 million, target innovations like broadband connectivity in remote areas of Scotland, or maritime spatial planning in Macaronesia.
- Some 100 projects invest €2.4 billion to improve accessibility and connectivity, mainly by developing port facilities in Spain and Ireland.
- Around 100 projects worth €360 million promote social inclusion, for example by improving tourism infrastructure in Wales or remote health monitoring in Ireland.
The funding comes from a variety of sources such as the EU (funds for regional development, R&D and the blue economy), the European Investment Bank, national, regional and private sources. The assessment argues that with the Atlantic plan, the community of stakeholders in the Atlantic Ocean area has grown stronger and better at raising funds for marine and maritime projects.
Some 20 projects, involving 320 international research teams, are not just European but involve our transatlantic neighbours as well, thanks to the Galway Statement and the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance between the EU, the US and Canada.
The European Commission will use the results of the independent study – and of the public consultation that was held last year – to fuel a discussion with the countries concerned and improve the plan’s performance even further between now and 2020.
This could include more specific objectives and key performance indicators to assess results further down the line, and designing more joint cross-border projects, with greater involvement of coastal regions.
#BlueEconomy - Marine Minister Michael Creed this week visited the Oceanology International trade exhibition in London on day two of his six-day visit to the UK.
Held every two years, Oceanology International at ExCeL London is recognised as the leading ocean technology and marine science event in the world, attracting more than 8,000 attendees and 500 exhibitors from over 79 countries.
Commenting on the event, Minister Creed said: “As chairman of the Government’s Marine Co-ordination Group, this is an important opportunity to support efforts to promote Irish organisations providing products and services for global marine services and furthermore to highlight Ireland as an attractive location for inward investment in the blue economy.
“The vision of the ‘Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth’ Strategy is to expand the Irish ocean economy to a value of 2.4% of GDP by 2030.”
This scheme, funded under the Marine Research Programme with the support of the Government, makes awards to provide assistance for networking activities that support the goals of the Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth Strategy.
They also constitute an important part of the implementation of the National Marine Research and Innovation Strategy 2017-2021, which was launched in June this year.
The main focus of the Networking & Travel Awards is to give early-stage researchers, post-graduate students, research assistants and intern staff an opportunity to present their marine research to an international audience, network with international marine experts, and promote research carried out in Ireland on the global stage.
Seventy-seven applicants received travel awards for this purpose. A further nine awards were made in support of hosting marine conferences or workshops in Ireland and for the establishment of international networks for leveraging marine funding.
A final eight awards were for the mobility of research expertise by SMEs for the transfer of knowledge in science and technology towards the development of the marine sector.
Since 2014, 41 participating Irish marine organisations have successfully partnered in 77 marine-related EU projects, bringing a minimum of €29.7 million in EU grant-aid to Ireland.
This represents 7% of the total available drawdown for Ireland for a range of research, development and innovation projects.
Next year’s call for the Marine Institute Networking & Travel Awards will open a month from now in mid-January.
Shipping is also responsible for the FTE employment of 4,666 people, an increase of 6.7% since 2014, according to the latest report from the Socio-Economic Marine Research Unit.
Afloat.ie previously reported on figures from the fourth SEMRU report that show the ‘blue economy’ is outperforming Ireland’s general economy.
But the report also details now sea-based transport in particular accounted for 85% of the total volume and 56% of the total value of goods traded in Ireland in 2016, and continues to be the largest contributor to Ireland's ocean economy in terms of turnover and Gross Value Added (GVA).
The positive trend is also reflected in a report released earlier this year by the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO), the Irish Maritime Transport Economist, which records a 2% increase in total port traffic in 2016, the highest level of throughput achieved since 2007.
Speaking after the launch of Ireland’s ocean economy report during SeaFest 2017, Ireland’s national maritime festival, IMDO director Liam Lacey said: “Ireland has very ambitious targets set out in the Government’s integrated marine plan for Ireland, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, which aims to increase the value of Ireland's marine economy to 2.4% of GDP by 2030.
“The latest report published by SEMRU shows that we are well on course to achieve this, with our shipping and maritime transport sector contributing enormously to the growth and potential of our marine economy.
“As an island nation, we are heavily dependent on sea-based transport to link Ireland to world markets and I am delighted to see further positive indicators of the potential of this sector to contribute to wider economic growth in Ireland, and also its resilience in what was a very challenging year for business.”