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Mayo County Council Announces 20 Beaches Awarded Flags From An Taisce

Date: 20-05-2024

An Taisce have announced the International Blue Flag and Green Coast Award recipients for 2024. The Irish Blue Flag Jury met on the February 1st, 2024, and nominated sites for consideration to the International Jury. The International Jury have awarded 12 Blue Flags and 8 Green Coast awards to Mayo for the 2024 season.

The awards were presented by Ms. Hildegarde Naughton TD, Government Chief Whip and Minister of State at the Department of Education at a ceremony held in the Galway Bay Hotel on Monday 20th May 2024.

The Blue Flag is an international award that recognises beach excellence and water quality. The Blue Flag Programme is operated in Ireland by An Taisce.

Mayo has again been awarded 12 Blue Flags for the following beaches: (1) Clare Island; (2) Keem Beach, Achill Island; (3) Dooega Beach, Achill Island; (4) Dugort Beach, Achill Island; (5)  Elly Bay, Belmullet; (6) Golden Strand, Achill Island; (7) Keel Beach, Achill Island; (8) Bertra Beach, Murrisk; (9) Mullaghroe Beach, Belmullet; (10) Mulranny Beach; (11) Old Head, Louisburgh and (12) Ross Beach, Killala.

Mayo was also awarded 8 Green Coast Awards for 2024, an increase of two awards compared with 2023, bringing the total beach awards to 20 for 2024. These awards are given to beaches which have excellent water quality but may be less developed and less populated than Blue Flag beaches. 

The Mayo beaches included in the Green Coast Awards are: (1) Tranaun Beach, Inishturk; (2) Cross, Louisburgh; (3) Carrowniskey Beach​; (4) Srah Beach​; (5) Termon Beach​; (6) Cross, Erris Peninsula​; (7) Rinroe​ and (8) Portacloy Beach.  

The Green Coast Award is a symbol of environmental excellence and has been established to acknowledge, promote, and protect the environment of our beaches. The award is for beaches which have excellent water quality, but which are also prized for their natural, unspoilt environment. These sites must be managed in partnership with the local community to be considered for the Green Coast Award.

Jim Horan, Administrative Officer, Environment, Climate Change & Agriculture, at Mayo County Council welcomed the 20 Blue Flag and Green Coast awards for Mayo saying: “Once again we are delighted to have been awarded 12 Blue Flag Beaches in Mayo. The Blue Flag award is international recognition of the excellent beach and water quality at these Mayo beaches.

“We are also delighted to have been given 8 Green Coast awards this year, up by 2 on the 2023 season. Both Portacloy and Cross Beach, Louisburgh having regained their Green Coast status this year.

“The Blue Flag and Green Coast Awards are a global recognition of the high standards of Mayo beaches, and I would like to acknowledge to all our local community groups, stakeholders, and other agencies for all their efforts in ensuring that our beaches continue to be maintained to the high standards required to be awarded Blue Flag and Green Coast for the 2024 bathing season. The continued partnerships and co-operation are reflected in these excellent 2024 awards.

“Finally, we would ask all beach users this summer to continue to be responsible, follow the instructions of the lifeguards, be aware of dog restrictions and to leave nothing behind on the beach except their footprints.”

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