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Minister Canney welcomes Geological Survey Ireland’s partnership in a European Space Agency funded project on coastal change

Sean Canney TD, Minister for Natural Resources at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, has welcomed Geological Survey Ireland's partnership in the "Coastal Erosion" project. This project is a European Space Agency (ESA) funded initiative under the auspices of the Copernicus programme, the European system for monitoring the Earth, coordinated and managed by the European Commission. The project will enhance our knowledge and monitoring capabilities of the coastal environment in response to the approaching challenges of climate change and rapid sea level rise.

An international consortium of public agencies: the British Geological Survey (U.K.); IHCantabria (Spain) and Geological Survey Ireland (Ireland)  and companies: ARGANS (U.K.); isardSAT (Spain); adwäisEO (Luxembourg); Arctus (Canada) and IGN-FI (France) - led by ARGANS (UK), has won a major project funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) to develop innovative Earth Observation (EO) products/information in response to authoritative requirements from end users in charge of Coastal Erosion studies and mitigation. The Coastal Erosion project is an application project within the Science for Society slice of the 5th Earth Observation Envelope Programme (EOEP-5) of ESA. The consortium will explore coastal change from space to prepare for long-term exploitation of remote sensing from satellites by large user communities, and is expected to provide substantial and concrete benefits to the targeted user communities when analysing the trends of coastal erosion and accretion as well as the status of coastal defence works, i.e. vulnerability of the coast.

The coastal environment is constantly changing. Climate change with storm surges, rapid sea level rise, floods, and so forth, impacts the coastline and through shoreline inland migration, has a substantial economic and human impact. It requires management and monitoring. Coastal Erosion is a two-phase, 24-month project. It is expected to be an ideal platform for research and development, in close partnership with champion users, therefore best representing the respective communities. It will deliver novel EO products and innovative algorithmic approaches required by the users.

Minister Canney said: "I'm delighted Geological Survey Ireland has been successful in partnering with a multinational consortium through this European Space Agency (ESA) project. Thanks to the European Union's Copernicus programme, now in its fifth year, vast quantities of satellite data are freely available to manage the environment and benefit European citizens.

Ireland has a long established history of space related research in this field. In recent years, Ireland has developed a thriving Earth Observation space community, facilitated through Ireland's membership of the European Space Agency."

The project will be presented at the Living Planet Symposium in Milan on the 14th May 2019.


For further information please contact the Press Office of the Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment at or 01 678 2441.

Notes for Editors

  • Geological Survey Ireland is the National Earth Science Agency. It is responsible for providing geological advice and information, and for the acquisition of data for this purpose. GSI produces a range of products including maps, reports and databases and acts as a knowledge centre and project partner in all aspects of Irish geology. GSI is a division of the Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment (DCCAE).
  • European Space Agency (ESA) is an international organisation with 22 Member States, including Ireland. By coordinating the financial and intellectual resources of its members, it can undertake programmes and activities far beyond the scope of any single European country. Its mission is to shape the development of Europe's space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.
  • Additional information: Craig Jacobs. Director of Business Development. ARGANS Limited


Initial Publication Date: 
Friday, 5 April, 2019