Public Consultation on Marine Protected area expansion

Public Consultation on the expert advisory group report ‘Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network’

The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien, TD, and Minister of State with responsibility for Heritage and Electoral Reform, Malcolm Noonan, TD, invite submissions, observations and comments on the report of an expert advisory group on marine protected areas (MPAs) entitled “Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network”.

The aim of the consultation is to ascertain the publics views on the process by which Ireland’s network of MPAs will be expanded.

In general terms, MPAs are geographically defined maritime areas with certain protections for conservation purposes. The Government aims to designate 30% of our maritime area as MPAs by 2030. Currently our MPA coverage is at 2.13%

This public consultation focuses on the report of an independent advisory group on expanding Ireland’s network of MPAs, published by the Department in January 2021. The report considers:

  • what features of our marine environment should be protected
  • why they should be protected, and
  • how they should be protected.

The public consultation aims to gather the views and perspectives of a wide range of people over a period of five months, in order to guide the Government in this work and underpin the expansion of Ireland’s MPA network

Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Report is available at: – Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network (


Consultation documents and further information from: – Public Consultation on expert advisory group report entitled “Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network” (


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