The Issue

A licence to Industrially Extract 1860 acres of Native Kelp in Bantry Bay has been issued to BioAtlantis, Tralee.  

NO Public Consultation took place. This licence was NOT Advertised Adequately. This licence has been issued with NO requirement for an Environmental Impact Assessment [E.I.A.]

This is the largest industrial scale native Kelp Extraction Licence ever issued in Irish or British waters.




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What we’ve been doing…

Auction for Kelp –May 08, 2019


An auction of quality and quirky items: from a night in a B&B to artisan products, furniture, organic goods, seaweed baths, and a large variety of vouchers to name a few! Held at The Mariner.

Happiness, Leisure & Pleasure FestMay 04-05, 2019


Live music, face-painting, a head shave, and a fantastic raffle held at Ma Murphy’s Bar. Fun for all!

Drawing and Painting Day –May 04, 2019


A fundraising drawing and painting day under the guidance of artist and teacher Catherine Weld.

Monitoring of Sargassum muticum –April 10, 2019


Members of the Campaign joined with Coastwatch, Cork Environmental Forum, and Cork Nature Network in monitoring the impact of Sargassum muticum (the invasive Japanese seaweed often called 'the rhododendron of the sea') in the waters of Bantry Bay near Adrigole.

Fundraising at Local Businesses – various dates, 2019


Thank-you to the many local businesses who have stepped up to lend us a hand in our fundraising efforts. In April, Organico held a week of matching all donations collected at their shop & café to the Kelp Campaign. In March, Life Balance Yoga held a Kelp Wellness Day with taster sessions –all donations in aid of the Kelp Campaign.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade –Mar 17, 2019


The Mermaid of the Bay has come ashore once again to join the parades in Bantry and Kealkill.

Dive Ireland International Expo –Mar 02-03, 2019


As part of the series of speakers at the Dive Show, Jack Trá (Campaigns Officer at the Marine Conservation Society) spoke on “Marine conservation and Ireland’s kelp forests”. Representatives of the campaign also attended the show to spread word of our cause.

Table Quiz & Raffle -Mar 01, 2019


A quiz night complete with a bonus Kelp-themed round of questions was enjoyed by an enthusiastic full house at the Bantry Bay Hotel. The raffle prizes and spot prizes were kindly donated by many local businesses.


Celebrating Two Years –Feb 07, 2019


A celebration of the second anniversary of the broadcast of the Eco-Eye episode 'Seaweed Matters' which first brought the proposed mechanical extraction of kelp in Bantry Bay to our community's attention. A look back on the memories and successes from the campaign thus far.


Demonstration: Damien English in Dunmanway –Dec 21, 2018


A peaceful demonstration of our dedication to our Campaign as Minister Damien English attends the Dunmanway Turnkey Development Sod-Turning.


Samhain Bric-A-Brac Sale and Fun Day –Oct 22-27, 2018


A little shop of wonders as well as a Fun Day complete with family pumpkin carving, children’s art competition, and brack baking competition!


Coastwatch Survey –Sept 23, 2018


We joined Coastwatch Volunteers in a survey, by foot and boat, of the coastline around Adrigole Harbour which involved identifying seaweeds, shells, water quality, and litter, along the coastline. Adrigole Harbour is an area identified as a Priority Area for Action under the River Basin Management Plan. In addition to the regular Coastwatch survey, we also identified and mapped one of the most valuable species of Seagrass, Zostera marina, and also the invasive seaweed Sargassum muticum.

Blue House Gallery Art Auction –Aug 24, 2018


Many thanks go to all of the talented artists who kindly donated their artworks to the fundraising auction run by the Blue House Gallery in Schull. This was a very successful fundraising initiative. Artworks were donated by over 30 different professional artists, many of whom would be known by those who follow the West Cork art scene.

Earth Activist Space, Townlands Festival –Jul 20-22, 2018


As pressures on ecosystems mount, communities organise to protect natural resources. These experiences make up a social resource that should be widely shared. As a part of the Earth Matters area, Bantry Bay –Protect Our Native Kelp Forest distributed literature, shared information, and promoted a solutions-based approach alongside other local activist groups.


Demonstration: Leo Varadkar in Drinagh –July 20, 2018


A peaceful demonstration of our dedication to our Campaign as Taoiseach Leo Varadkar attends the Drinagh Co-op Feed Mill Extension Opening.



Art for Kelp –Jun 1-23, 2018


Local amateur and professional artists donated a unique range of artworks for sale at affordable prices in support of our Campaign. These were showcased locally at Organico as an exhibition prior to their sale.

Land and Sea Protest –Jul 1, 2018


Over 500 community members showed their support for our Campaign in a protest involving a continuous line of supporters walking from Bantry Square to the Abbey Strand as well as those following at sea by boat, kayak, and more.

Public Meeting –May 28, 2018


A very well attended public meeting was held to inform members of the public about our concerns.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade –Mar 17, 2018


A mermaid was sighted during the Bantry and Kealkill parades…


Demonstration at Dáil Éireann –Mar 07, 2018


A mock funeral procession was held outside of Leinster House to highlight the importance of kelp to the livelihoods of the fishermen and to coastal businesses. This demonstration coincided with a Private Member’s Motion brought forward in the Dáil by independent deputies Catherine Connolly and Thomas Pringle concerning the rights of traditional seaweed harvesters.


Skipper Expo, Galway –Mar 02, 2018


Despite drastic weather conditions, we had a representative of the Campaign attending the Boat Show to promote our cause.


John Spillane Concert –Dec 29, 2017


An enjoyable concert with great music by John Spillane –in aid of the Kelp Campaign.


Townlands Festival –Jul 21-23, 2017


We held a stand at the festival to share information about our cause alongside other local groups.

We need to think before we act

And we need to act before it's too late

"I can only compare these great aquatic forests of the southern hemisphere with the terrestrial ones in the inter-tropical regions. Yet if in any country a forest was destroyed, I do not believe nearly so many species of animals would perish as would here, from the destruction of the kelp


Amidst the leaves of this plant numerous species of fish live, which nowhere else could find food or shelter; with their destruction the many cormorants and other fishing birds, the otters, seals, and porpoises, would soon perish"


~ Charles Darwin

Public consultation and advertising required

NO mention of 'MECHANICAL HARVEST'  ¦  NO mention of 'NATIVE KELP FOREST'  ¦  NO mention of '1860 ACRES OF BANTRY BAY'

Dept of Housing stated that a notice was placed in a national newspaper - no record can be found by the Dept. of the advertisement published


  1. No public meetings  
  2. No consultation with Bantry Bay Coastal Zone Charter Groups (formal framework for public consultation for developments in Bantry Bay).


  1. No information on development given to Cork County Council
  2. Notice placed in Bantry Bay Garda Station for 21 days - no access to copy of record on Dept. of Housing website


  1.  Advertisement placed by BioAtlantis in Southern Star Newspaper on 12th December 2009 states 'Occupy an area of foreshore for the purpose of harvesting specific seaweed at Bantry Bay'