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Technological Innovation for Sustainable Development

The objective of this work package is to explore the practical uses of inexpensive drone technologies to support the sustainable development of the coastal zone. It is intended that these project publications will provide practical guidance on the use of drone technology to support sustainable coastal management practices, including best-practice guidelines, specific examples of applications, and guidance on legal and technical requirements in relation to drone surveying in general and at the national level for each partner area.  This will facilitate knowledge transfer within and outside of the NPA, support the exchange of ideas, experience and good practice, thus improving the stock of organisational knowledge, and provide innovative solutions to specific management challenges,  

Drones provide critical information about the state of natural and built environments, and thus can be used to monitor coastal change, provide baseline information about habitats and land use, and measure the effectiveness of management practices.  Drones enable coastal managers to collect a large amount of information about an area quickly, for example, in the aftermath of a storm, and also in remote areas that are difficult or dangerous to access.  Given the recent rapid reduction in the cost of the technology and the expansion of consumer equipment, local authorities can benefit from understanding how they can be used for practical applications in coastal zones. We have created a document outlinning guidance for Local Authorities  on the use of drone technology here. Also read another report on the Application of drone technology for sustainable development of the coastal zone here.

Here too we have examined how the use of drones can be utilised for the sustainable development of the seaweed sector in Co. Mayo and the protection, preservation and promotion of natural and built heritage on Rathlin Island.

Mayo Case Study

The ability for innovative technologies, such as drones, to support local authorities and promote sustainable development of coastal regions have gained in popularity but have thus far been underutilised. This report provides a practical guidance on seaweed surveying and will detail survey methods and results conducted in the case study of Clew Bay, County Mayo, Ireland. This can be viewed as an example and demonstration of how this technology can be utilised with the experience and skill levels of most coastal managers. View the full report here



Rathlin Case Study

This report provides practical guidance to local authorities in the use of drone technology to digitally preserve, document, and monitor natural and built heritage sites to promote the sustainable development of regions at the coast. This document is therefore intended to enable local authorities with limited experience but a desire to understand and use drone technology for the digital preservation and documentation of natural and built heritage sites. Read the full report here

Drone Surveying for the Protection and Preservation of Natural and Built Heritage sites Addendum

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