23rd October

Our Ocean Wealth conference 2016

The third annual conference under the banner, 'Our Ocean Wealth' (Galway, July 1), is targeting international and national industry leaders, policy-makers, researchers and maritime entrepreneurs, to debate the latest in marine innovation, spatial planning, ocean ecosystems and sustainability.

OOW 2016

Gerald Fleming, Met Eireann and Eleanor O'Rourke, Marine Institute, check out an AR sandbox used to explain how we map the seabed

'Into the Blue - Innovating for our Marine Future' will be addressed by Vice Admiral Mark Mellett, head of the Irish Defence Forces; Sigi Grugber, the European Commission DG Research Head of Marine Resources; Gerald Fleming, Met Éireann; Craig McLean, US National Ocean & Atmospheric Administration and Linda Rosborough of Marine Scotland.

Read more: Our Ocean Wealth conference 2016

Irish divers lodge complaint in Brussels

The Irish Underwater Council has questioned the legality of planned dumping this summer of 400,000m3 of dredge spoil from Dublin Port into an area of Dublin Bay given Special Area of Conservation status after the permit was granted.

Dublin Bay Ocean Divers

Coral Garden. The richness and diversity of marine life less than 15km from the centre of Dublin Photo Willie Siddall

The area – from Rockabill to Dalkey Island ― was designated an SAC under the EU Habitats Directive in December 2012, as being ‘suitable aquatic habitat’ for harbour porpoise, according to the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

Read more: Irish divers lodge complaint in Brussels

Message in a bottle: the world's oldest at 108 years

A postcard returned to the Plymouth Laboratory of the Marine Biological Association has been recognised by Guinness World Records (February 2016) as the oldest message-in-a-bottle after 108 years, four months and 18 days before being picked up on a beach on Amrum island -  one of the North Frisian Islands on the German North Sea coast.

message in a bottle

Bottles containing postcards were released in the southern North Sea in the early years of the 20th Century, as part of the MBA's research into ocean currents and fish behaviour. The return rate was around 55%, encouraged by the reward of one shilling.

Read more: Message in a bottle: the world's oldest at 108 years

'Blue society' requires education, communication and awarness

EU decision-makers and stakeholders gathered in the European Parliament last November to discuss the project Sea for Society and the ‘blue society’ concept, which envisions a new governance model aimed to make the ocean an integral part of society.

Blue society Copyright Amit Liber copy

 Photo: Amit Liber

 Hosted by Ricardo Serrão Santos MEP and Co-Chair of the Working Group, the Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services conference concluded with recommendations to further promote and implement a blue society. Stakeholders also endorsed the concept by signing the Blue Society Stakeholder’s Commitment, advocating the transition towards a ‘blue society’.

Read more: 'Blue society' requires education, communication and awarness

Irish young scientists reach Capetown on board RV Polarstern

German research vessel Polarstern has reached Cape Town, South Africa, following a five-week voyage during which 32 international young scientists were trained to observe and measure the 'vital signs' of the Atlantic Ocean on the North South Atlantic transect (NoSoAT).

RV Polarstern Alfred Wegener Institute Folke Mehrtens Resized

The NoSoAT was an "incredible opportunity" for these students to traverse the Atlantic Ocean. "Along the way, students collected and analysed data on everything from microalgae diversity and ocean dynamics, to satellite remote sensing of sea surface temperature, from Irish and German marine scientists," remarked Dr Paula McGrane, SMART coordindator.

Read more: Irish young scientists reach Capetown on board RV Polarstern

Irish marine energy firms secure State funding

Three Irish marine energy firms are to receive €3.5m in State funding to develop and test new ocean energy technologies. The announcement was made at a major two-day European conference on ocean energy in Dublin.

Open Hydro ICOE2012

Open Hydro's tidal stream device attracts interest at the 4th International Ocean Energy Conference in Dublin, October 20-21. Photo Shay Fennelly/Aquaphoto

Administered through the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), Ocean Energy secured €2.3m to design and build a full-scale version of their Ocean Energy (OE) Buoy wave energy converter which will be deployed and tested at the US Navy Wave Energy Test Site in Hawaii. The funding is matched by €4.5m from the US Department of Energy in a collaboration between Ireland and US using Irish ocean energy technology.

Read more: Irish marine energy firms secure State funding

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