Mr Phil Hogan T.D., Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, has welcomed the presentation of 134 beach awards, an increase of 15 on the 2013 number.
Presenting the Blue Flag and Green Coast Awards at a ceremony in Skerries, Co. Dublin, the Minister expressed satisfaction with the awarding of 80 Blue Flags (76 beaches and 4 marinas) this year. This was an increase of 6 over the 2013 number. Minister Hogan noted that the number could have been higher but for the destruction caused by the winter storms.
‘I am pleased to say that a total of 134 beach awards will be made today. This represents an increase of 15 on the 2013 awards and is testament to the sterling efforts of communities, local authorities and An Taisce. Results might even have been better except for the devastation of the storms last winter which caused significant damage in some areas’, the Minister said
The Minister went on to say that Blue Flags represent excellence and are internationally recognised. ‘The Blue Flag is a clear signal of quality. I am delighted to announce that today we will be awarding a total of 80 Blue Flags, for locations that have achieved excellent water quality and a very high standard across a wide range of other criteria, including environmental education, management of the environment, safety and other services’.
Minister Hogan also stated that ‘Behind each of the 80 recipients lies a team of people who worked hard to make the grade and to each and every one of them I extend my sincere congratulations.
54 Green Coast Awards were presented for 2014. This represents an increase of 9 on the 2013 number. ‘These recognise excellence in environmental standards and sustainable management. They generally apply to beaches which do not have the full suite of facilities associated with the Blue Flag. Although visitor numbers to these beaches may not be as high, it is nevertheless important for the environment, the local community and tourists alike that these beaches also achieve high standards’.
An important aspect of the Green Coast Awards is the involvement of Coastcare Volunteer Groups. There are now over 400 active Coastcare groups established throughout the island. The Minister paid tribute to the work of these groups stating that ‘Ireland has over 5,000 kilometres of coastline and coast community groups provide an invaluable contribution to the protection and enhancement of the coastal resource’.
Recipients today should be enormously proud of their efforts in achieving these hard won awards,the Minister concluded.
- List of Blue Flag Awards 2014
|Louth||Port||Louth retains 3 Blue Flags|
|Fingal||Skerries South Beach||Fingal regains 4 Blue Flags having lost the Blue Flags in 2013 due to non-compliance with the excellent standard of the new BWD.|
|DLR||Killiney||DLR retain 2 Blue Flags.|
|Wicklow||Brittas Bay North||Wicklow retains 3 Blue Flags.|
|Wicklow||Greystones South Beach|
|Wicklow||Brittas Bay South|
|Wexford||Curracloe||Wexford retains 3 Blue Flags for Curracloe, Courtown and Rosslare Strand and has regained the Blue Flag for Morriscastle after not being awarded in 2013.|
|Waterford||Clonea||Waterford has retained the Blue Flag for 2 beaches Tramore and Clonea and has regained the Blue Flag for Councellors Strand and Dunmore Strand.|
|Cork||Garrylucas||Cork has retained the Blue Flags for 5 beaches.|
|Kerry||Ballinskelligs||Kerry has retained 11 Blue Flags since last year.
Rossbeigh beach has lost its Blue Flag due to ongoing construction at the beach as a result if considerable storm damage.
Ballybunnion North has regained the Blue Flag status.
|Clare||Ballycuggeran||Clare has retained 5 Blue Flags since last year.
Kilkee retains its Blue Flag in spite of ongoing construction works as a result of storm damage.
Miltown Malbay and Spanish Point were not awarded the Blue Flag due to ongoing construction works primarily as a result of storm damage.
|Galway||Traught||Galway retains 5 Blue Flags.|
|Galway||Tra an Doilin|
|Galway||Tra Mor, Indreabhan|
|Galway City||Salthill||Galway City retains 2 Blue Flags.|
|Mayo||Dooega||Mayo has retained 10 Blue Flags since last year.
Mulranny and Bertra have lost their Blue Flags as a result of storm damaged beaches.
|Sligo||Rosses Point||Sligo retains its 2 Blue Flags.|
|Donegal||Bundoran||Donegal retains 14 Blue Flags.|
|Wexford||New Ross Marina|
|Cork||The Royal Cork Yacht Club|
2014 GREEN COASTS AWARDEES
|Cork||Ardnahinch||Cork has retained 9 Green Coast Awards for|
|Donegal||Ballyhernan||Donegal has retained 6 Green Coast Awards.|
|Fingal||Balcarrick||Fingal has regained the GCA for 4 beaches.
These 4 beaches are dual award achieving Blue Flag status also.
|Fingal||The Velvet Strand Portmarnock|
|Galway||Aillebrack||Galway has retained 6 Green Coast Awards and has been awarded the Green Coast Award for Trá gCaorach Inis Oirr. Dog’s Bay has been withdrawn as a result of storm damage.|
|Galway||East End Inisbofin|
|Galway||Trá Inis Oirr|
|Galway||Trá gCaorach Inis Oirr|
|Galway City||Salthill||Galway City has retained 2 Green Coast Awards.|