MPA News and Updates

Bigger & Better MPAs News and Updates

New webpage with interactive map

Our analysis of fishing in Irish MPAs shows hundreds of hours worth of fishing with damaging gear took place between 2018 and 2021 in the south-west of Ireland. See the webpage here:


New infographic on blue carbon in Ireland

Protecting parts of our seas in a network of highly protected areas can increase the amount of carbon stored within ocean habitats and species. Disturbing blue carbon habitats can result in emissions of carbon into the atmosphere. See our full infographic here: The Ocean – Our Blue Climate Change Ally 


Public consultation: Expanding Ireland's Marine Protected Area Network

The Irish government has released a report on how to expand Ireland’s network of marine protected areas. We encourage everyone to get involved and send in submissions to this consultation. Our submission guide can be found here.

Please see our full submission to the government’s MPA report here: IWT submission to Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network


MPA Townhall Meetings

We are running a series of (virtual) townhall meetings to highlight the MPA consultation – register here for a meeting near you.


Restoring Irelands Ocean Wildlife Report

***New Report on Ireland’s failure to protect marine Natura 2000 sites***

Read about the underlying causes of ongoing deterioration of protected marine flora and fauna and what needs to be done to reverse this trend.


New MPA website

Along with our partner NGOs we have launched a new website designated to MPAs. The website introduces case studies from Portugal, France and Ireland to highlight good and bad practice examples as well as a legal toolkit for challenging poor management of marine Natura 2000 sites.

Visit for more information.


Razor shell dredging halted in Waterford Estuary

Coastwatch secures win for nature in Razor Shell fisheries court case! After a razor shell dredge fishery was opened illegally in a Marine Protected Area in Waterford Estuary without any risk assessments, Coastwatch successfully challenged this decision in the High Court. Read more here!


Wild Oceans Photo Competition

Throughout June, the IWT ran a marine themed photo contest. We received over a hundred entries of beautiful underwater and coastal images of Ireland. The winner was chosen by public vote and can be viewed here.


Public consultation submissions

Ireland’s first marine spatial plan is due to be published in 2020. This plan will be very important for the proper zonation and management of marine protected areas. Read our submission to the draft National Marine Planning Framework here.

Read our submission on the Marine Strategy Framework Directive here: IWT submission on MSFD.


General election  2020

We campaigned for healthy seas during the general election 2020. Read our 8 asks for healthier seas here.