Marine and Coastal Processes

Priority Research Area Leader – Dr. Robin Raine

Photo: Boat at sunset. Courtesy of Damien Guihen Photo: SEM image phytoplankton Photo: Connemara, Co. Galway

The coastal ocean is used for an enormous number of activities such as fishing, aquaculture, oil and gas exploration, transport, trade and tourism.  The coastal environment is therefore increasingly becoming under pressure as a resource, receiving ever-increasing amounts of discharges as a direct result of anthropogenic activity, and is under threat from sea level rise and other consequences of global change.

Research into the marine environment of Irish coastal waters has a long history at NUI Galway, with strong early inputs from the old Departments of Zoology, Botany, Oceanography, Microbiology and the Applied Geophysics Unit.   Many of these activities have been assimilated within the Ryan Institute into the Marine and Coastal Processes thematic area, strengthened by a range of additional activities which combine into a series of sub-themes.   These categories are Coastal Biogeochemical Processes, Ecosystem and Human Health, Marine Pathways, and the Changing Coast, and the whole contributes to our vision for clean, healthy, safe and biologically diverse seas.