17th July

Nautical Institute Presidency for Irish Mariner

On June 17 in Sydney Australia, the AGM of the Nautical Institute will elect Captain Robert McCabe to the Presidency of the Institute for a two-year term.

The Nautical Institute is the international representative body for maritime professionals involved in the control of sea-going ships and is a non-governmental organisation (NGO) with consultative status at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). It has 6,500 members worldwide across 110 countries.  

CIL Robert-McCabe

Captain McCabe is a career long member of the Institute, a former Chairman of the Institute’s Technical Committee and a frequent contributor to international conferences particularly on e-Navigation and user needs issues.

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Spanish tall ship visits Dublin

On a calm morning in early June, the world's third largest tall ship, Juan Sebastian de Elcano, arrived into Dublin on a four-day courtesy call, the first since 1999.

This 113 metre, four-masted schooner built in Cádiz in 1928 is the midshipmen training vessel for the Spanish Navy. Each year she carries out a six-month training course, mostly outside of Spanish waters. Of the 85 cruises todate, ten have been world circumnavigations. When visiting foreign ports, Juan Sebastian de Elcano also acts as floating embassy, welcoming aboard Spain's diaspora.


Juan Sebastián de Elcano arriving into Dublin. Photo courtesy of the Spanish Tourism Office

The ships is named after a notable Spanish sailor who made one of the biggest exploits of Spanish maritime hisitory. In 1519 he enlisted as a navigation expert in a five-day expedition ordered by the Emperor Charles the First, which departed from Sanlúcar de Barrameda under the command of Magellan. The mission was to find a new route to the Spice Islands.

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Five regional ports to transfer to local authorities

The Cabinet has approved the draft General Scheme of a new Bill with important implications for Ireland’s port sector. 

The Harbours (Amendment) Bill 2014 will allow the five designated Ports of Regional Significance (Drogheda, Dún Laoghaire, Galway, New Ross and Wicklow) to transfer to local authority ownership 'at a future date in line with government policy to strengthen local government,' according to the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS)


Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin. One of five 'Ports of Regional Significance' to be transferred to local authority ownership. Photo Gillian Mills

These five ports play a role in tourism, leisure amenity, and regional trade and their future is 'best secured under strong local governance', DTTAS added. 

Read more: Five regional ports to transfer to local authorities

Ireland's Naval Service welcomes LÉ Samuel Beckett into the fleet

The Irish Naval Service has taken official command of its latest vessel, LE Samuel Beckett, following an ceremony in Dublin lead by Mrs Caroline Murphy (niece of Samuel Beckett) and Enda Kenny, An Taoiseach and Minister of Defence.

"The naming and commissioning carried with it a great sense of pride and anticipation for all Naval Service personnel. I know that the ship's first captain, Commander Ken Minehane and his crew are eagerly looking forward to working up the new ship to its full potential," remarked An Taoiseach.

LE Samuel Beckett

An Taoiseach and Minister for Defence, Enda Kenny T.D. receives Military Honours at the naming and Commissioning Ceremonies for the naval ship LÉ Samuel Beckett, on 17th May 2014

He added that the role of the INS presented a range of challenging roles now more than ever before, asserting the integrity of Ireland's territorial waters and protecting the waters around Ireland. 

Read more: Ireland's Naval Service welcomes LÉ Samuel Beckett into the fleet

Largest ever Irish maritime training contract signed in Cork

GAC Training & Service Solutions (GTSS), the maritime training arm of global shipping, logistics and marine services provider GAC and the National Maritime College of Ireland (NMCI), has been awarded a four-year training contract with Chevron Shipping Company. It is the largest maritime training contract ever to be awarded in Ireland.

NMCI GTSS signs landmark training agreement

 Back Row L-R Christer Sjodoff (GAC), Julie Sinnamon (Enterprise Ireland), Orla Battersby (Enterprise Ireland), Minister Richard Bruton TD

Front Row L-R Conor Mowlds (GAC NMCI), Terry Luke (Chevron)

Under the new agreement, GTSS will train Chevron Shipping’s junior officer corps with basic skills training and provide engine room workshop skills for its junior engineers, while more than 450 officers from around the world will receive maritime training through GTSS at the National Maritime College of Ireland facility in Cork, Ireland.

Read more: Largest ever Irish maritime training contract signed in Cork

EU Parliament adopts Maritime Spatial Planning legislation

E Commission logo 2 resized

The European Parliament has endorsed (17/04) a Directive for MSP that 'should help Member States develop plans to better coordinate the various activities that take place at sea, ensuring they are as efficient and sustainable as possible,' an European Commission communique states.

In coastal and maritime areas, many activities compete for the same space and resources, e.g. fishing grounds, aquaculture sites, marine protected areas alongside maritime infrastructures such as cables, pipelines, shipping lanes, oil, gas and wind installations. 

'The new Directive will help avoid potential conflicts between diverse users and create a stable environment attractive for investors thereby contributing to sustainable growth.

It will also contribute to more efficient implementation of EU environmental legislation in marine waters and will help Member States reach good environmental status of their waters by 2020.

It should help establish coherent networks of Marine Protected Areas for which cooperation on planning across borders is essential and ensure that participating of all stakeholders in planning processes.'

Next Steps

Once adopted by ministers, Member States must transpose the Directive into their national legislation by 2016 and nominate Competent Authorities in charge of implementation. MS must also draw up their national marine spacial plans by 2021.

'They are free to tailor the content of the plans and stategies to their specific economic, social and environmental priorities, and their national sectorial policy objectives and legal traditions, but must respect the minimum requirements of the Directive. 

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