The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien, TD, and Minister of State with responsibility for Heritage and Electoral Reform, Malcolm Noonan, TD, invite submissions, observations and comments on the report of an expert advisory group on marine protected areas (MPAs) entitled “Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network”.
The aim of this public consultation is to invite you to share your views on the process by which Ireland’s network of MPAs will be expanded.
In general terms, MPAs are geographically defined maritime areas with certain protections for conservation purposes. The Government aims to designate 30% of our maritime area as MPAs by 2030. Currently our MPA coverage is at 2.13%.
Why are we launching a Public Consultation?
Having a clean, healthy, diverse and productive marine environment will help protect biodiversity, our well-being and our economy. It will also provide greater resilience against the effects of climate change and support a wide range of sustainable human activities and practices.
Ireland’s network of marine protected areas (MPAs) will be an important tool for ensuring that we continue to have a thriving marine environment, whether in our coastal bays, shallow seas or in the deeper Atlantic. This public consultation focuses on the report of an independent advisory group on expanding Ireland’s network of MPAs, published by the Department in January 2021. The report considers:
- what features of our marine environment should be protected
- why they should be protected, and
- how they should be protected.
The public consultation aims to gather the views and perspectives of a wide range of people over a period of five months, in order to guide the Government in this work and underpin the expansion of Ireland’s MPA network.
We are inviting any interested parties (e.g. individual persons or groups) to provide comments and make submissions on the MPA Advisory Group’s report. A copy of this report can be accessed by clicking on the first link under the heading ‘Documents’ below.
How you can get involved
To get involved, please use Chrome/Edge/Safari/Firefox browsers to complete and submit the online survey . (It may not load correctly on Internet Explorer)
A PDF copy of the survey form can be accessed by clicking on the second link under the heading ‘Documents’ below.
All submissions must be entered by 5pm on Friday 30 July 2021 .
Please note that the survey is entirely anonymous and that it can be saved and stored temporarily before you complete it and submit it online.
If you are unable to use the online survey you can send your completed survey form by email or by post. You can also send in other views, observations or material using the contact details below:
MPA Public Consultation 2021, c/o Marine Environment, Department of Housing, Local Government & Heritage, Newtown, Wexford, Y35 AP90.