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Displaying items by tag: Marine Protected Areas

The Government has approved development of a general scheme of a Bill for designation and management of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Ireland’s maritime territory.

The approval has been welcomed by Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage Darragh O’Brien, who is responsible for marine planning, and Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform Malcolm Noonan.

“As an island nation, our seas and our ocean are absolutely crucial for Ireland,” Mr O’Brien said.

“They support our economy, inward and outward trade, our energy supply and communications systems, as well as our climate, our environment, our cultural traditions and heritage, our health and well-being,” he said.

“As an island nation, our seas and our ocean are absolutely crucial for Ireland”

“In order to ensure that our seas remain clean, healthy and productive, and our unique habitats and biodiversity are protected, we are committed to designating a network of up to 30% of our maritime area as MPAs by 2030,” he said.

Mr Noonan described the development of the legislation as “an important milestone as we work to progress Ireland’s network of MPAs”.

“ It will provide us with strong powers to help address the twin environmental crises of biodiversity loss and climate change by protecting and conserving the marine ecosystems that underpin the essential and multifaceted services that coastal communities and wider society depend on, such as fishing, tourism, cultural heritage, climate regulation and resilience to environmental change,”Mr Noonan said.

“In the context of energy security and the ramping up of Ireland’s offshore renewable energy ambitions, it’s all the more important that we work at pace to deliver on our commitment to meeting both biodiversity and climate objectives,” he said.

The legislation will provide for the identification, designation, regulation, management, enforcement and review of MPAs, ensuring that they form a coherent, connected, representative and climate-resilient network.

It aims to make key provisions for public and stakeholder participation and engagement in relation to the MPA process.

It will also make provisions for implementation and enforcement structures and will be designed to work in parallel with the Maritime Area Planning Act 2021 and existing legal protection measures under the Wildlife Acts and the EU Birds and Habitats Directives.

The ministers said it is intended that the heads of the Bill will be brought to Government for approval “as soon as possible”, with work on drafting and enacting the primary MPA legislation “expected to follow thereafter”.

Published in Marine Planning
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The north Donegal coast has been identified by the Fair Seas coalition as a high biodiversity “Area of Interest” for potential Marine Protected Area (MPA) designation.

Only 2% of Irelands' seas are currently protected. The Fair Seas environmental NGO coalition says it is urging the Government to meet its target of increasing this to at least 30% by 2030, informed by the best scientific data and early and continuous stakeholder engagement.

Fair Seas has identified 16 “Areas of Interest” for MPA designation in Irish waters.

The north coast “Area of Interest” covers 3,744km² and is rich in biodiversity, it notes.

“Basking sharks are seen in large numbers, especially around Malin head, where between 60 to 75 individuals have been seen in a single sighting. Bottlenose dolphins and harbour porpoises are found along the north coast year-round, with particularly high numbers at the mouth of Lough Swilly,”it says.

“Marine Institute surveys found this area to have one of the highest average catches per haul of tope shark. The tope shark is listed as Critically Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN),” it notes.

“ The main threat to this species is overexploitation from commercial fishing as there is still allowable catch even though evidence shows it is declining. Thornback skate are found across this area, and Lough Swilly is a refuge site for the critically endangered flapper skate, the largest skate in the world, reaching up to 2.85 metres in length,” Fair Seas says.

It says that the largest herring spawning grounds in the country are located north of Donegal. Some of these grounds are located within this proposed MPA.

“Whiting spawning grounds also cover this entire area. Historic herring spawning grounds have disappeared from much of the Irish coast; therefore, protection must be given to ensure the last of these areas are not lost forever,”it says.

“The cliffs from Horn Head to Fanad Head are home to important colonies of seabirds of high conservation concern such as kittiwake, razorbill and puffin. Lough Swilly provides sanctuary for breeding terns, black guillemots and black-headed gulls,” it says.

“Tory Island and Inishtrahull are rich in seabird diversity. Bloody Foreland is of major importance to migrating birds with more than 31,000 seabirds and 24 species recorded over a four-year period,” it says.

“MPAs allow species and habitats to recover and thrive while benefiting fishing communities and coastal economies,” Fair Seas points out.

“ The ocean is the largest carbon store on Earth, so MPAs have huge potential to fight climate change,” it says.

“As noted by Professor Mark Costello in the foreword of Revitalising Our Seas, the Fair Seas report: “If properly planned, MPAs can lead to more stable and sustainable coastal fisheries, with added benefits of increased tourism and public enjoyment of marine life.”

“There is no evidence of any MPA anywhere in the world reducing fishery catch. There are many examples of MPAs restoring fished populations and these restored stocks consequently repopulating adjacent areas where they contribute to fisheries,” Prof Costello has said.

Full details on the ‘North Coast Area of Interest’ are available in the Revitalising Our Seas PDF here

Published in Marine Planning

‘Winds of Change at Sea’ is the title of an open public discussion on the future of our seas in Killiney next week.

Hosted by Fair Seas alongside Killiney Bay Community Council and Dalkey Community Council, the event will hear from the environmental coalition’s Regina Classen who will discuss the scientific background around her work on identifying Fair Seas’ suggested candidates for enhanced marine protections.

The group recommends that Ireland’s Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) must increase from the current 2.1% of coastal and offshore areas to 36%.

Last month it was reported that draft legislation to increase Ireland’s MPAs was “almost completed”. Heritage Malcolm Noonan said the first drafts of the bill “will set an ambition for Ireland to reach 30% MPAs”.

The event will also discuss whether there is any conflict between these MPA proposals and the growth of offshore wind energy projects that are expected to play a significant role in Ireland’s emission reduction plans.

The open event takes place next Wednesday 20 July at Fitzpatrick’s Castle in Killiney from 7.30pm to 9pm. Attendance is free but booking is essential, via the Eventbrite page HERE.

Published in Marine Planning

The European Commission is proposing to set legally binding nature restoration targets on both sea and land.

The Nature Restoration Law will apply to every EU member state and will complement existing laws and targets.

The proposal has been welcomed by Irish marine environmental network Fair Seas and Birdwatch Ireland – with the latter organisation describing it as “transformative for Ireland’s degraded ecosystems”.

It will also “help us tackle climate breakdown”, according to Birdwatch Ireland, pointing out that degraded habitats are less resilient to the effects of climate change.

As it states, 85% of Ireland’s internationally important habitats are in poor condition and not able to function properly, which means we cannot fully avail of the services they provide such as carbon storage in peatlands and flood attenuation.

Also, 26% of Ireland’s birds regularly occurring bird species are Red Listed birds of conservation concern in Ireland with farmland birds the fastest declining group of birds. One third of Ireland's wild bee species are threatened with extinction, it stays.

Birdwatch Ireland’s marine policy and advocacy officer Sinéad Loughran said that “a healthy, thriving ocean is fundamental for the survival of humankind,but the reality is that our seas have never been in a worse state than they are today”.

“Twenty-three of Ireland’s twenty-four breeding seabirds are red or amber listed birds of conservation concern. Ensuring they have sufficient fish to eat is essential,”she said.

“If given a proper chance, and with a helping hand, our ocean will have the chance to heal, and nature can be restored at sea. With a strong EU Nature Restoration Law, there is the chance to reverse much of the harm caused by humans and fisheries,”Ms Loughran said.

Birdwatch Ireland head of advocacy Oonagh Duggan noted that a the recent National Biodiversity conference, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that "the business case for biodiversity is compelling: the benefits of restoring nature outweigh the costs ten-fold, and the cost of inaction is even higher."

“We now need the Irish government to back the highest ambition possible in this law and to set up a Nature Restoration fund to restore our decimated biodiversity and to provide a safe future for all of us,”Ms Duggan said.

Fair Seas said that highly or fully protected marine protected areas (MPAs) are “known globally as the best way to restore marine environments”.

“By setting up large no-take zones, where no industrial activity is permitted, Ireland can implement this new law to meet its full potential for biodiversity recovery and climate stabilisation,”it said.

“The law states that habitats and ecosystems with the ‘greatest potential for removing and storing carbon and preventing or reducing the impact of natural disasters such as floods will be the top priorities”, it said.

“These criteria put Ireland in a prime position as our marine ecosystems like seagrass meadows and kelp forests offer both storm protection and store large amounts of carbon. The sediments of our continental shelf area have also been identified as areas with enormous carbon storage capacity if undisturbed by industrial activity,” Fair Seas said.

“Only 6.4% of the ocean globally is covered by MPAs and less than 2% are no-take MPAs, where full protection is given to the ecosystem and species at risk,” it said.

“ The new ecosystem restoration bill offers Ireland the opportunity to revitalise our seas. No-take MPAs offer the entire ecosystem the chance to recover, from the seafloor to the shoaling surface waters and the rocky outcrops of nesting seabird colonies,” Fair Seas said.

“Currently, only 2% of Ireland’s seas are protected, however, there is no active monitoring or management in place to ensure they are actually protected,”it said.

Fair Seas is calling for 30% of Ireland’s waters to be placed within MPAs by the year 2030.

“This aligns with our government's previous international commitments and would satisfy our new obligations within the Nature Restoration Law,”it said.

The Fair Seas campaign is led by a coalition of Ireland’s environmental non-governmental organisations and networks, including Irish Wildlife Trust, Birdwatch Ireland, Sustainable Water Network, Friends of the Irish Environment, Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, the Coomhola Salmon Trust, Irish Environmental Network and Coastwatch.

Fair Seas is funded by Oceans 5, Blue Nature Alliance, BFCT and The Wyss Foundation.

Published in Marine Planning
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Draft legislation to designate almost a third of Ireland’s waters as marine protected areas (MPAs) is “almost completed”, the Heritage Minister has said.

Minister Malcolm Noonan told the Irish Examiner last week that his department would meet “shortly” with Fair Seas, a coalition of Ireland’s leading environmental NGOs and networks which recommends that MPAs here must increase from the current 2.1% of coastal and offshore areas to 36%.

The minister added that first drafts of the bill to legislate for further protections for marine wildlife and biodiversity “will set an ambition for Ireland to reach 30% MPAs”.

“We know that through our public consultation that there has been overwhelming support for this initiative,” Minister Noonan said. “We’re also saying MPAs don’t exist in isolation — they can exist with fishing communities and with other marine interests.”

The Irish Examiner has more on the story HERE.

Published in Marine Wildlife

The Irish Wildlife Trust has welcomed a European Parliament report calling for action on bottom trawling but has questioned why most MEPs did not support a ban on the fishing technique in marine protected areas (MPAs).

A report by Portuguese socialist MEP Isabel Carvalhais entitled “Towards a sustainable blue economy in the EU” was adopted by MEPs this week.

The IWT has queried why the original text of the report calling for a ban on bottom trawling in all MPAs was not adopted, even though it had previously been supported in the European Parliament’s Fisheries Committee.

“Instead, the majority of MEPs, including Irish Fine Gael and Sinn Féin representatives, voted to dilute the text and only restrict bottom trawling in so-called “strictly protected” areas, which cover only 1% of EU waters,” the IWT noted.

Another amendment calling for the EU to prohibit all environmentally damaging extractive industrial activities like mining and fossil fuel extraction in MPAs was adopted by all Irish MEPs.

The IWT said it believed bottom trawling “falls within the category of ‘environmentally damaging extractive industrial activities”. It noted that the International Union for the Conservation of Nature defines “industrial fishing” as all fishing using trawling gear that is dragged or towed across the seafloor or through the water column, and fishing using purse seines and large longlines.

Shadow rapporteur for the Greens/EFA group Grace O'Sullivan said the report “marks a serious step forward for the Fisheries Committee, which is a traditionally tough place to get environment protection legislation passed”.

“Our group achieved some key wins in terms of language on bottom-trawling, mapping carbon-rich marine habitats, and a ban on extractive activities in MPAs,” she said.

“However I am dismayed that a majority of MEPs are still unwilling to effectively protect MPAs,” O’Sullivan continued.

“In many MPAs in northern Europe, bottom-trawling is actually more intense than elsewhere. This is a complete contradiction in terms. Together with civil society, our work continues now, as member states must meet commitments under the Biodiversity Strategy and as the Commission prepares its ‘Action Plan to conserve fisheries resources and protect marine ecosystems", she said

The European Parliament also voted to map and restore carbon-rich marine habitats, protecting them from activities that can disturb and release carbon stored in the seabed, like bottom trawling.

IWT marine policy and research officer Regina Classen welcomed this amendment as “particularly welcome and timely as Ireland plans to increase its MPA coverage to 30% by 2030”.

Published in Marine Wildlife

A “vast majority” of respondents in a public consultation on marine protected areas (MPAs) support the Government’s plans for expanding the network, according to an independent review.

Some 93 per cent of respondents also support the inclusion of existing conservation sites into the national MPA network, the review for the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage has found.

The Programme for Government aims to increase MPAs from around two per cent to 30 per cent of Irish waters by 2030, and most respondents felt the current level was insufficient.

Some 91% support the “key principles for the ongoing MPA process”, the department said.

It said respondents noted information and data gaps along with deficits in education around marine protection.

The need for “meaningful, early, and timely engagement with stakeholders, particularly the fishing industry, was considered critical to the MPA expansion process”, the department says.

“Respondents stated that the role of stakeholders and the general public was central to successful implementation and management of MPAs, and that coastal and island communities and businesses need to be supported throughout the establishment and implementation of any MPA,” it said.

“Respondents called for urgent action, based on evidence, along with increased research and resourcing, in order to protect our marine life and also the benefits to the economy and society that come from having a diverse and productive marine environment,” it said.

A total of 2,311 responses to the public consultation were received by the department, it says.

The highest percentage of responses to the consultation’s online survey portal came from the environmental sector, followed by education, health and fisheries, it said.

“ A very wide range of representative bodies, organisations and enterprises also made submissions to the consultation,”it noted.

It said it had begun developing “stand-alone legislation” to enable identification, designation and management of MPAs to meet Ireland’s national and international commitments.

Currently, there is no definition of an MPA in Irish law, and environment protections under the Wildlife Acts only apply to the foreshore.

MPAs are geographically defined maritime areas with certain protections for conservation purposes. In addition to conserving marine species and habitats, MPAs can support maritime economic activity and reduce the effects of climate change and ocean acidification.

“Many valuable views and perspectives, covering all stakeholders and the public in general, have been highlighted through this public consultation,” Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien said.

“The strong support for the MPA process, expressed through these submissions, is a positive indication that stakeholders and the wider public are keenly interested in having a clean, healthy, diverse and productive marine environment,” he said.

“I thank all of those who made a submission for their time, their insights and their substantive input. This is an urgent issue and my department is making strides in the protection of our maritime area,” he said.

Mr O'Brien noted that the Maritime Area Planning Bill, which he described as the “biggest reform of marine governance since the foundation of the State”, was enacted in December.

“We are also progressing the establishment of the Maritime Area Regulatory Authority (MARA) as a matter of urgency,” he said.

Environmentalists have been critical of the priority given to maritime area planning legislation, primarily for offshore renewable, in contrast to the timeline for legislation for MPAs.

The full report on Marine Protected Area (MPA) Public Consultation Submissions can be found here

Published in Marine Planning

Where will marine protected areas and marine conservation zones be located in Irish coastal waters and what effects will they have on sailing, watersports generally, angling, commercial fishing, shipping?

The Marine Environment Section in the Water Division of the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage appears to be the ‘lead’ in decision-making about the location of these areas, on which work is underway this month, following the passing of the Marine Areas Planning Bill by the Oireachtas in mid-December. This Department described the passing of that Bill as “the biggest reform of marine governance since the foundation of the State.”

Another State agency, MARA, is being set up which will focus on offshore wind projects, water and wastewater infrastructure, bridges, marinas, coastal protection works, flood relief works and undersea telecommunications cables and power interconnectors. As far as I can determine at present, there 27 offshore wind farms planned for Irish coastal waters. Already there have been threats of legal action from commercial interests against some effects of the new Marine Planning Bill.

Who will decide the Marine Protected Areas?Who will decide the Marine Protected Areas?

On my Podcast this week, I’m focusing on how decisions will be made about the marine protected areas. In an island nation, the Department of the Marine does not have the leading role in making major maritime decisions. The Chief Executive of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, a strong voice about the marine environment, says that “distant civil servants” not be allowed “foist these new designations” upon the maritime community.

Listen to the Podcast here

Published in Tom MacSweeney
Tagged under

Ireland has joined an international agreement to establish a marine protected area (MPA) in the North Atlantic Current and Evlanov sea basin.

The area is located in the high seas, to the west of the Ospar maritime area in the north-east Atlantic.

It covers 595,196 km² - over eight times the size of Ireland’s land area.

The designated area is home to up to five million seabirds across 21 different species, including five – such as the Atlantic Puffin – that are globally threatened.

Other threatened species, like the wide-ranging Basking Shark and Leatherback Turtle, also inhabit the ocean area.

Ireland’s commitment to the new MPA was announced on Friday by Minister of State for Heritage and Reform Malcolm Noonan at an Ospar ministerial meeting in Cascais, Portugal.

The Ospar Commission for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic, an international organisation, has been chaired by Ireland since 2018.

The commission also approved a North-East Atlantic Environment Strategy.

It has 12 strategic objectives and over 50 practical, operational objectives to tackle the triple challenges of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution (including marine litter) facing the oceans,Mr Noonan said.

Its implementation will be part of Ospar’s contribution to the achievement of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Noonan said.

Published in Marine Wildlife

Two Government ministers have called on people to give their views on the expansion of Ireland’s marine protected areas (MPAs) before the deadline at the end of this week.

Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien and Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform Malcolm Noonan issued the appeal with five days to go to close of submissions this Friday, July 30th.

MPAs are geographically defined maritime areas with certain protections for conservation purposes. The Government aims to expand Ireland’s MPA network from 2.13% to 30% of Ireland’s maritime area by 2030.

“Expanding Ireland’s MPA network will constitute a major change in marine environmental protection in Ireland. At present, there is no definition of an MPA in Irish law. Environmental protections under the Wildlife Acts only apply to the foreshore. Protection in marine areas beyond 12 nautical miles is limited, both in terms of space and species,”the two ministers state.

They have asked members of the public, stakeholders, industries and others for their views on the final report of the MPA advisory group, which was chaired by Prof Tasman Crowe of UCD’s Earth Institute.

The reports note that in addition to conserving marine species and habitats, MPAs can support maritime economic activity and reduce the effects of climate change and ocean acidification.

The report quotes economic data showing Ireland’s ocean economy has a turnover of €6.2 billion and provides stable, sustainable work for 34,132 full-time equivalent employees.

“Ireland, along with the rest of the world, faces the twin crises of climate change and accelerating biodiversity loss on land and at sea,” O’Brien said.

“The Government has a vision of clean, healthy, diverse and productive oceans and seas around Ireland. Over the last five months we have received a strong number of submissions, from a range of groups and people of all ages and backgrounds, on the advisory group’s report on progressing our vision of healthier seas,” he said.

"The submissions we receive now will inform our legislation on the identification, designation and management of MPAs. That work will begin later this year,” he said.

The Government recently published Ireland’s first National Marine Planning Framework and approved the Maritime Area Planning Bill.

It proposes to establish in law a new development consent regime for the maritime area.

Both the new forward planning model, envisaged by the Bill, and an expanded MPA network, will secure the NMPF’s objectives, the ministers state.

Published in Coastal Notes
Tagged under
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Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) - FAQS

Marine protected areas (MPAs) are geographically defined maritime areas where human activities are managed to protect important natural or cultural resources. In addition to conserving marine species and habitats, MPAs can support maritime economic activity and reduce the effects of climate change and ocean acidification.

MPAs can be found across a range of marine habitats, from the open ocean to coastal areas, intertidal zones, bays and estuaries. Marine protected areas are defined areas where human activities are managed to protect important natural or cultural resources.

The world's first MPA is said to have been the Fort Jefferson National Monument in Florida, North America, which covered 18,850 hectares of sea and 35 hectares of coastal land. This location was designated in 1935, but the main drive for MPAs came much later. The current global movement can be traced to the first World Congress on National Parks in 1962, and initiation in 1976 of a process to deliver exclusive rights to sovereign states over waters up to 200 nautical miles out then began to provide new focus

The Rio ‘Earth Summit’ on climate change in 1992 saw a global MPA area target of 10% by the 2010 deadline. When this was not met, an “Aichi target 11” was set requiring 10% coverage by 2020. There has been repeated efforts since then to tighten up MPA requirements.

Marae Moana is a multiple-use marine protected area created on July 13th 2017 by the government of the Cook islands in the south Pacific, north- east of New Zealand. The area extends across over 1.9 million square kilometres. However, In September 2019, Jacqueline Evans, a prominent marine biologist and Goldman environmental award winner who was openly critical of the government's plans for seabed mining, was replaced as director of the park by the Cook Islands prime minister’s office. The move attracted local media criticism, as Evans was responsible for developing the Marae Moana policy and the Marae Moana Act, She had worked on raising funding for the park, expanding policy and regulations and developing a plan that designates permitted areas for industrial activities.

Criteria for identifying and selecting MPAs depends on the overall objective or direction of the programme identified by the coastal state. For example, if the objective is to safeguard ecological habitats, the criteria will emphasise habitat diversity and the unique nature of the particular area.

Permanence of MPAs can vary internationally. Some are established under legislative action or under a different regulatory mechanism to exist permanently into the future. Others are intended to last only a few months or years.

Yes, Ireland has MPA cover in about 2.13 per cent of our waters. Although much of Ireland’s marine environment is regarded as in “generally good condition”, according to an expert group report for Government published in January 2021, it says that biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation are of “wide concern due to increasing pressures such as overexploitation, habitat loss, pollution, and climate change”.

The Government has set a target of 30 per cent MPA coverage by 2030, and moves are already being made in that direction. However, environmentalists are dubious, pointing out that a previous target of ten per cent by 2020 was not met.

Conservation and sustainable management of the marine environment has been mandated by a number of international agreements and legal obligations, as an expert group report to government has pointed out. There are specific requirements for area-based protection in the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), the OSPAR Convention, the UN Convention on Biological Diversity and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

Yes, the Marine Strategy Framework directive (2008/56/EC) required member states to put measures in place to achieve or maintain good environmental status in their waters by 2020. Under the directive a coherent and representative network of MPAs had to be created by 2016.

Ireland was about halfway up the EU table in designating protected areas under existing habitats and bird directives in a comparison published by the European Commission in 2009. However, the Fair Seas campaign, an environmental coalition formed in 2022, points out that Ireland is “lagging behind “ even our closest neighbours, such as Scotland which has 37 per cent. The Fair Seas campaign wants at least 10 per cent of Irish waters to be designated as “fully protected” by 2025, and “at least” 30 per cent by 2030.

Nearly a quarter of Britain’s territorial waters are covered by MPAs, set up to protect vital ecosystems and species. However, a conservation NGO, Oceana, said that analysis of fishing vessel tracking data published in The Guardian in October 2020 found that more than 97% of British MPAs created to safeguard ocean habitats, are being dredged and bottom trawled. 

There’s the rub. Currently, there is no definition of an MPA in Irish law, and environment protections under the Wildlife Acts only apply to the foreshore.

Current protection in marine areas beyond 12 nautical miles is limited to measures taken under the EU Birds and Habitats Directives or the OSPAR Convention. This means that habitats and species that are not listed in the EU Directives, but which may be locally, nationally or internationally important, cannot currently be afforded the necessary protection

Yes. In late March 2022, Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien said that the Government had begun developing “stand-alone legislation” to enable identification, designation and management of MPAs to meet Ireland’s national and international commitments.

Yes. Environmental groups are not happy, as they have pointed out that legislation on marine planning took precedence over legislation on MPAs, due to the push to develop offshore renewable energy.

No, but some activities may be banned or restricted. Extraction is the main activity affected as in oil and gas activities; mining; dumping; and bottom trawling

The Government’s expert group report noted that MPA designations are likely to have the greatest influence on the “capture fisheries, marine tourism and aquaculture sectors”. It said research suggests that the net impacts on fisheries could ultimately be either positive or negative and will depend on the type of fishery involved and a wide array of other factors.

The same report noted that marine tourism and recreation sector can substantially benefit from MPA designation. However, it said that the “magnitude of the benefits” will depend to a large extent on the location of the MPA sites within the network and the management measures put in place.

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