Swedish royalty impressed by cutting edge research at Marine Institute

King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden at the Marine Institute headquarters in Oranmore pictured beside the state of the art Irish Marine Data Buoy. Photo: Andrew Downes, Xposure

King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden at the Marine Institute headquarters in Oranmore pictured beside the state of the art Irish Marine Data Buoy. Photo: Andrew Downes, Xposure

King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden visited the Marine Institute headquarters in Oranmore tlast weekend as part of a three-day state visit.

The King and Queen of Sweden were welcomed by Minister Seán Kyne TD, Government Chief Whip and Minister of State for the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands and greeted by senior officials from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

Minister Seán Kyne TD said he was delighted to welcome King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden to the Marine Institute in Galway, and discuss the shared interests between our two countries to sustainably manage and develop our marine resource.

“The visit also encourages further collaboration to observe and understand how our ocean is changing and respond to current and future patterns of change,” he added.

Dr Paul Connolly, Director of Fisheries Ecosystems Advisory Services at the Marine Institute spoke to the King and Queen of Sweden about surveying and assessing fish stocks in Irish waters which assists in sustainably monitoring and developing Ireland’s fisheries resource. The King and Queen also viewed a series of artworks produced as part of the EU-funded BlueFish Project, which aims to increase our knowledge and understanding of marine resources and the potential impacts of climate change in the Irish and Celtic Sea ecosystems.

A data buoy from the Irish Marine Data Buoy Network was on display and The King and Queen saw first-hand the infrastructure used to collect data for weather forecasting as well as oceanography research. There was also a presentation on ocean energy and the range of facilities available for marine renewable energy testing and the development of new sensor technologies.

Dr Peter Heffernan CEO of the Marine Institute said it was an honour to host the King and Queen of Sweden to the Institute, and showcase our work in the area of ocean observation and sustainable fisheries. Providing scientific advice and services in these areas is one of the Institute’s key roles, and essential to Ireland achieving a sustainable ocean economy, as well as protecting and managing our marine ecosystems.”

King Carl XVI Gustaf has long been interested and active in the long-term health of our oceans and conservation of marine life, serving as Chairman of the Swedish organisation of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF ) since 1988. King Carl XVI Gustaf is also guardian of the Baltic Salmon Fund, which promotes the sustainable management of wild salmon in the Baltic sea and the rivers along the Baltic coast.

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