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Weekly Maritime News Round-Up

THIS ISLAND NATION
Weekly Maritime News Round-Up
News, Comment, Opinion
March 31, 2014

THIS WEEK: Could 80,000 Filipino seafarers lose their jobs over qualifications? Fishing is Ireland’s most dangerous job… What a South Pole telescope saw about the start of the world …. and more…..

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THIS ISLAND NATION RADIO PROGRAMME, WEDNESDAY, APRIL 2, 7.30 p.m.

Three of the country’s leading maritime organisations are joining forces with Youghal Community Radio to support the monthly series of hour-long maritime radio programmes, THIS ISLAND NATION, broadcast from 7.30 p.m. to 8.30 p.m. on the first Wednesday night of each month on cry104fm

The RNLI which operates the country’s lifeboats; Irish Water Safety, which is the national State body for safety on the water and the Commissioners of Irish Lights that runs the lighthouses and navigational aids around the Irish coast will provide monthly report inserts to the programme from this Wednesday.

This month’s programme includes interviews with the new Head of the National Maritime College in Cork Harbour, Conor Mowlds, who will discuss what the College has achieved as it comes to its tenth anniversary; the Captain of the German Naval tall ship, Gorch Fock, who explains why in these modern times the German Provigil reviews sailing ship and the man who is fighting for the survival of one of Ireland’s iconic heritage ships.

The programme will be broadcast this Wednesday, April 2, from 7.30-8.30 p.m. on Youghal Radio at 104fm It will also be available on the station’s website live at www.cry104fm.com where it can also be downloaded as a podcast. The programme is available to community radio stations.

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THIS ISLAND NATION SUPPLEMENT IS NOW PUBLISHED IN THE APRIL EDITION OF THE MARINE TIMES on sale throughout Ireland with a bright, new, editorial layout, reporting on aspects of the marine sphere – shipping, fishing, leisure and the marine environment.

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CLIMATE CHANGE IS ALREADY HERE AND ALL THE OCEANS ARE BEING AFFECTED

That blunt statement by the United Nations on the effects of climate change underlines what the many reports we have carried in THIS ISLAND NATION over past months have indicated. Seas will rise, the risk of flooding, hunger and conflict as a result are all warned about. It is the starkest warning ever of extreme consequences from climate change. The only way of averting the danger is by cutting greenhouse emissions. Young people born now and who are alive at the end of the century will feel all the impact. Vulnerable plant and animal species, especially in fragile coral reefs and Arctic habitats, could be wiped out. Countries will have to shore up flood defences, making coastal areas, homes, water supplies and transport more climate-resilient. Poor, tropical nations will be hit harder than rich countries in temperate zones. Measures adapting to climate change include reducing water wastage, planting parks to ease heat build-up in cities and preventing population centres in places exposed to extreme weather events.

“It’s not just polar bears, coral reefs and the rain forest under threat, it is us,” said Greenpeace International. “Climate change’s impact can be detected everywhere. It’s already hurting us. How bad it will get depends on choices in the future.”

FISHING MOST DANGEROUS JOB

The Irish Health and Safety Authority has launched a new campaign to reduce deaths and injury in the fishing industry. New statistics indicate that Irish fishermen have a forty times greater risk of injury than other employments. The new campaign is to focus on management of health and safety before leaving port, as well as safety at sea, encouraging fishing boat skippers to carry out proper risk assessments and prepare safety statements. The HSA said that only 20% of vessels inspected last November had completed a risk assessment, while just 30% had a safety statement.
“It’s vital that skippers and fishermen manage the very serious risks they’re facing and ensure that tragedy doesn’t strike their boat,” according to the Authority.

CELTIC LINK GONE

Celtic Link Ferries which operated from Rosslare has been taken over by Stena Line which intends to continue to operate the year-round Rosslare-Cherbourg service with three return sailings each week. It is the first Ireland-European Continental direct Stena service. The O’Flaherty family from Kilmore Quay, with support, had started Celtic Link in 2005 after P&O left the route primarily to carry fish exports, their main business. It widened its business, also carrying passengers and cars.

WHAT A SOUTH POLE TELESCOPE SAW

Astronomers from North America and Cardiff University have released the results of observations from a telescope located in the South Pole which measured microwaves from space and indicated that this showed that the theory of ‘inflation’ could explain the ‘Big Bang’ at the birth of the universe. This theory claims that the universe expanded at a phenomenal rate driven by energy dispersed by the ‘Big Bang’ over billions of years.

PHILIPPINE QUALIFICATIONS CHALLENGED

The ship officers’ union, Nautilus, has rejected calls from ship managers for European countries to issue certificates of competency to Filipino officers because of the possibility that the European Maritime Safety Agency might ban them from working on EU-flagged ships. This follows an EMSA investigation into the standards of training and certification in the Philippines which showed that some training academies there were falling short of Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping required from qualified officers. Philippines governmental concern has been expressed that 80,000 Filipino seafarers could lose their jobs if the EU withdraws recognition of their STCW certificates issued by Philippine training centres.

WHAT DO PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA, ELVIS PRESLEY, BILL GATES AND BOB MARLEY HAVE IN COMMON?

Each one of them has a marine species named after him. The latest, Bob Marley’s, is a small crustacean. Gnathia marleyi is a small crustacean that infests and eats the blood of fish in the coral reefs of the shallow eastern Caribbean. It is a new species in the gnathiid family of crustaceans, says the National Science Foundation It is also the first new species to be discovered in the Caribbean in more than twenty years. Bob Marley died of cancer in 1981, at the age of 36, so his reaction to having a bloodsucking fish parasite named after him will not be known!

Readers’ comments are welcome.

Email: thisislandnation@gmail.com

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