DP Energy, one of Ireland’s leading developers of renewable energy, and global energy leader Iberdrola have announced a sponsorship deal with the Cork-based ‘Clean Coasts Ballynamona’ under their Inis Ealga Marine Energy Park joint venture project, which is located off the south coast of Ireland.
The partnership will provide funding for the purchase of a boat and a range of equipment to assist with the protection of waterways, coastline, seas and marine life off the south coast, further demonstrating DP Energy and Iberdrola’s commitment to supporting conservation and the restoration of biodiversity in coastal waters. The funding will also be used to facilitate a range of science-backed education programmes to promote biodiversity.
The multi-award-winning Clean Coasts Ballynamona manages almost 80kms (or 3%) of the total Irish coastline for marine litter and manages 34 acres of coastal habitats for biodiversity. Part of the Sea and Land Trust, the organisation has more than 300 volunteers and organises many coastal clean-ups every year, removing tonnes of marine litter, and engages with schools and businesses in Environmental Education.
DP Energy entered into a Joint Venture with Iberdrola in February 2021 for a 3GW pipeline of offshore wind projects. As one of the world’s largest renewable energy producers, Iberdrola has substantial experience in offshore wind development and, importantly, shares DP Energy’s commitment to a sustainable and ethical approach to development.
Located off the coasts of Cork and Waterford, the Inis Ealga Marine Energy Park is a 1,000 MW (1GW) floating offshore wind project. The project is in its early development stage, with ecology and site investigation surveys underway. Once operational, it is estimated that Inis Ealga Marine Energy Park could produce enough clean renewable energy to supply up to 1 million homes annually. The project is programmed to be operational by 2030 and will significantly contribute to Ireland’s Climate Action Plan target of 80% renewable electricity by 2030.
Commenting on the sponsorship milestone, Yvonne Cronin, DP Energy’s Community and Stakeholder Liaison Manager, said: “We are really proud to be involved with Clean Coasts Ballynamona and the inspiring work they are undertaking along the Cork coastline. The purchase of this equipment will increase the effectiveness of the initiative by facilitating access to currently inaccessible areas that are harbouring vast quantities of marine litter. The partnership also underlines the commitment that Inis Ealga Marine Energy Park, through DP Energy and Iberdrola, has for an ethical and sustainable approach to offshore wind development.”
Declan McMahon, Iberdrola’s Offshore Development Senior Project Manager, said: “Clean Coasts Ballynamona and their hundreds of volunteers really make a positive contribution to the local community. It is challenging work cleaning and maintaining part of the Irish coastline and we hope that this agreement will help to make some of those tasks a little easier to manage. We are very proud to support such important work.”
Proinsias Ó Tuama, Founder of Clean Coasts Ballynamona, said: “We’re delighted to have the team behind Inis Ealga Marine Park with us on this initiative. This equipment and boat will allow the impact and reach of our work and actions to be greatly enhanced, whether for access to inaccessible coastal areas or to support much-needed citizen science programmes. This equipment will be a multiplier of our capabilities and assist us in tackling and solving the issues affecting our coast locally and nationally. We hope that the learning outcomes of this solution focused project will help other coastal communities around Ireland.”