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Marine Science


Fair Seas welcomes Ireland’s eighth national park

Fair Seas Welcomes Irelands Eighth National Park. The first Marine National Park is located in an area previously identified by the environmental coalition as an area of interest for Marine Protected Areas. It is also home to Ireland’s only Hope Spot. In January 2023, Fair Seas successfully campaigned for the Greater Skellig Coast to be recognised as a special place that is scientifically identified as critical to the health of the ocean.

Jack O’Donovan Trá, Fair Seas Communications Officer said, “The new Marine National Park is located in an area of incredible biodiversity. It is vital that this area, its rich habitats and species are preserved for future generations. National Parks, as guardians of nature, aim to do that, however, we believe that properly resourced and effectively managed Marine Protected Areas will go even further, ensuring that Ireland meets its targets to protect 30% of its marine environment by 2030 and ensuring that stakeholders consultation is a central part of the process.”

Fair Seas is campaigning for strong and ambitious legislation committing to effectively protecting 30% of the seas around Ireland by 2030, with 10% strictly protected. The group wants to see stakeholder engagement at every stage, clear delivery timeframes and a robust management framework, with targeted, site-specific measures to ensure MPAs deliver for nature.

The seas off the coast of Kerry are breeding areas for several threatened species of shark, ray and skate. This is an important area of interest for whales, dolphins and porpoises. The islands and archipelagos that skirt the peninsulas of Kerry are some of Ireland’s most prominent seabird breeding sites.