Clean Coasts Symposium & Coastcare Merit Awards

December 3, 2012

Photos will be available on Friday afternoon from Maxwell Photography Tel: 01 8308072

An Taisce’s Coastcare Merit Awards 2012


An Taisce’s annual Clean Coasts Symposium & Coastcare Merit Awards were held on Friday 30th November at The Royal College of Physicians. The Clean Coasts symposium was officially opened by Mr. Fergus O’Dowd, TD Minister of State at the Department of Environment, Community & Local Government. The symposium was an important knowledge exchange forum for those with an interest coastal conservation particularly the issue of marine litter. It is widely known that litter in the marine environment threatens our ocean wildlife and ecosystems; and undermines tourism and economic activity. The Clean Coasts programme has experienced considerable growth in Ireland and there are now over 285 groups protecting Ireland’s coastal environment.  Some of those groups shared their experiences and made inspiring presentations about how they have become custodian of the coast. The prestigious Coastcare Merit Awards are about recognising the invaluable work done by committed volunteers across the country on a daily basis protecting and restoring Ireland’s beautiful coastline.


Speaking at the event Minister O’Dowd said, “This initiative recognises the marine environment as something to be valued and cherished. Clean Coasts represent an opportunity for local communities to empower themselves to protect and enhance their valued resource, a precious legacy for the generations to come.”


Speaking at the event, Annabel FitzGerald, Coastal Programmes Manager, An Taisce said, Marine litter is a global concern, affecting all the oceans of the world. Every year, millions and millions of tonnes of litter end up in our seas and oceans worldwide, posing environmental, economic, health and aesthetic problems…. All 285 Coastcare Groups should be incredibly proud of the impact they have made in protecting their coastal environment. Collectively they have removed over 250,000 pieces of litter from the Irish coast in 2012. These prestigious awards are about celebrating these coastal custodians who will inspire others to join the movement for litter free seas.”


Erica Roseingrave, Public Affairs & Communications Manager, Coca-Cola HBC Ireland said:

“Ireland’s stunning coastline is a unique asset deserving of the utmost protection and care. The Clean Coasts programme encourages all of us to look after our beautiful beaches and Coca-Cola is proud to once again support An Taisce with this important initiative.  We congratulate all of the award winners and thank them for their efforts in improving our coastal communities and protecting the natural beauty of our marine environment."


Minister O’Dowd added that, “An important aspect of Clean Coasts initiative is the involvement of Coast Care Volunteer Groups.  Their efforts are fundamental to achieving and maintaining Green Coast status.  The 285 active Coast care community groups currently involved are to be commended for their on-going efforts and this provides a strong indication of the pride that individuals have in their communities and surroundings.”


Clean Coasts engages people in protecting our beaches seas and marine life for future generations.


The Clean Coasts Programme is operated by the Environmental Education Unit of An Taisce and is supported by the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, Coca-Cola and Fáilte Ireland.



For further information please contact:

Annabel FitzGerald, Coastal Programmes Manager

Mob: 0876169727



This year’s Coastcare Merit Award winners summary:

Contact details for each of the groups below.

Event of the Year

Dalkey Tidy Towns

Coastcare Initiative of the year

Marram Grass Planting

Inchydoney Island Residents Association, Co. Cork

Friends of Doohoma Coastline, Co. Mayo

Coastcare School of the year

St. Ibars N.S. Co. Wexford

Coastcare Newcomer of the year

Rathmullan Green Coasts, Co. Donegal

Coastcare Business of the year

Abbott Diagnostics, Co. Sligo

Coastcare Group of the year

Ballinskelligs Environmental Action Group (B.E.A.G.),

Co. Kerry

Individual of the year

Blackrock Tidy Towns, Co. Louth

Long term contribution to Clean Coasts of a group

Brittas Bay Coastcare Group, Co. Wicklow

Long term contribution to Clean Coasts of an individual

Arklow Coastcare Group, Co. Wicklow



An Taisce’s Clean Coasts Photography Exhibition Goes on Tour Around the Coast of Ireland

December 8, 2011

The second annual Clean Coasts Photography Awards were held in October in Tailor’s Hall, Dublin. Mr. Fergus O’Dowd TD, Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government presented the prizes to the winning photographers. Speaking at the ceremony, Speaking at the awards Minister O’Dowd said ‘The outstanding photographs serve to remind us how fortunate we are in having this valuable coastal resource to enjoy but we must also be aware that where we hav...

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