The Irish Ocean Literacy Network (IOLN) aims to bring together relevant institutes, agencies, researchers, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs), individuals and educators who are working towards the vision of “achieving an ocean literate society across the island of Ireland”.
An ocean literate society is one which understands the ocean’s influence on us and vice versa - therefore, an ocean literate citizen:
· Understands the importance of the ocean to humankind
· Can communicate about the ocean in a meaningful way
· Can make informed and responsible decisions regarding the ocean and its resources.
The activities of the group support the 3 key goals of Ireland’s Our Ocean Wealth strategy: to create a thriving maritime economy, to support healthy ecosystems and promote engagement with the sea, in addition to those of the UK’s Marine Policy Statement in Northern Ireland.
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See the Ocean live and unedited
Galway Bay Cable Observatory
The SmartBay Observatory in Galway Bay is an important contribution by Ireland to the growing global network of real-time data capture systems deployed within the ocean – technology giving us new insights into the ocean which we have not had before.
The observatory was installed on the seafloor 1.5km off the coast of Spiddal. The observatory uses cameras, probes and sensors to permit continuous and remote live underwater monitoring. This observatory equipment allows ocean researchers unique real-time access to monitor ongoing changes in the marine environment. Data relating to the marine environment at the site is transferred in real-time from the SmartBay Observatory through a fibre optic telecommunications cable to the Marine Institute headquarters and onwards onto the internet. The data includes a live video stream, the depth of the observatory node, the sea temperature and salinity, and estimates of the chlorophyll and turbidity levels in the water which give an indication of the volume of phytoplankton and other particles, such as sediment, in the water.