Monday, February 04, 2019

AQUAFACT and partners awarded EPA funding to carry out key research on Irish Lagoons.

AQUAFACT and our partners Roden Ecology, Geoff Oliver Ecological Consultants, Hydro Environmental Ltd., BEC Consultants and the French National Centre for Scientific Research have been awarded a grant under the EPA STRIVE Programme. The project is entitled Coastal Lagoons: Ecology And Restoration (CLEAR) and the proposed research seeks to address the two pressures of water pollution and hydrological modification on lagoon ecology by answering a number of questions: which nutrient limits growth in the lagoon or is growth light limited? What is the fate of these nutrients once in the lagoon? Do they accumulate in lagoonal sediments or are they exported to sea? Are sediment-bound nutrients available to the ecosystem and will they persist, even if additional imports cease? Does breaching/piping under the lagoon barrier accelerate the export of nutrients to sea? If breaching/piping under the barrier occurs, what effect will changes in salinity have on the lagoon's ecosystem? By studying a single site, we would hope to describe and review the major factors involved in lagoon degradation and propose restoration methods applicable to other sites. While the initial outcome of the project will be a detailed plan to restore the Lady’s Island site, the project will also result in methods to quantify excessive nutrient inputs and impacts of lagoon turnover or flushing rates on conservation status for all Irish lagoons and suggest a suite of techniques which could reduce nutrient loading.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

2018 John Costelloe Scholarship

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

John Costelloe Scholarship for GMIT Marine Science Students

AQUAFACT is pleased to announce a new scholarship opportunity for second year students on the Applied Freshwater and Marine Biology degree programme in the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT). The John Costelloe Scholarship award was launched at a function in GMIT, Galway on Tuesday, 20 March, attended by family, friends and work colleagues of the late John Costelloe, and students and staff in the GMIT Dept of Natural Sciences. The new scholarship consists of a sculpture by John Coll, who was a friend and former colleague of John Costelloe, and an annual stipend both of which are sponsored by AQUAFACT. 

John studied Zoology to honours level in NUI Galway and was awarded a first class degree by the College. He went on to do a Ph.D. and his chosen topic of study was succession in sublittoral epibenthic communities. He was an avid SCUBA diver and underwater photographer and he used these skills to great extent in the course of his Ph.D. studies. Following completion of his thesis, he won a post-doctoral position to study epibenthic communities in Skidway Institute of Oceanography, Savannah, Georgia and on of mussel rafts in the Galician rias of North Western Spain. Again, his specialist skills of SCUBA diving and underwater photography proved highly valuable in this work.

On returning from Spain in 1986, John set up AQUAFACT, an environmental consultancy company specialising in monitoring and managing marine, freshwater and terrestrial environments. Thirty years later, AQUAFACT is a unique organisation and the longest running marine environmental consultancy in Ireland and has worked in over twenty countries across four continents. Sadly, John passed away in September 2016 at the young age of 59.

Catherine Costelloe, speaking at the launch of the scholarship in memory of her late husband, quotes the Seamus Heaney lines engraved on the sculpture ‘Believe the further shore is reachable from here’.  “John was passionate about his work and we hope that this award will encourage and assist students during their academic life.”

“The John Costelloe Memorial award perpetuates John’s passion to understand, develop, manage and protect the environment. The family and company hope that John’s drive to make the world a safer and sustainable place will inspire future students in their work.”

Dr Heather Lally, lecturer in Freshwater Ecology and Biology, GMIT, says: “I’m delighted we have the opportunity, together with AQUAFACT and John’s family, to recognise the abilities and aptitude of the student who will receive this award. John was a life-long supporter of students and learning and gave tirelessly of his time and energy to students he encountered in his professional life.”

Dr Lisa Ryan, Head of the GMIT Dept of Natural Sciences, says: “The award is a fantastic opportunity and incentive for students in the second year of the Applied Freshwater and Marine Biology programme and will be awarded to the student with the highest mark at the end of the academic year.”

Thursday, January 01, 1970

AQUAFACT International Services Ltd is looking for an Ecologist

 Company details:

AQUAFACT is an environmental consultancy specialising in monitoring and managing resources in marine, freshwater and terrestrial environments. We are based in Galway city and have been in business nationally and internationally for over 32 years. We provide marine, freshwater and terrestrial consultancy services and advice to public and private sector clients. AQUAFACT’s capabilities include Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA), Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) and Appropriate Assessment (AA), marine, intertidal, freshwater and terrestrial surveys and assessments, hydrographic surveys and hydrodynamic modelling.

 Job Description:

 This role involves the preparation of a series of Environmental Impact Assessment Reports (EIAR) for aquaculture operations. EIA scoping, consultations and the preparation of EIAR chapters and appendices will be required. Experienced staff will provide assistance and guidance throughout.

Qualifications/Experience Required:

·         As a minimum an honours primary degree in ecology or related discipline

·         Post grad qualification an advantage

·         Excellent report writing skills are essential

·         Experience in assessing environmental impacts an advantage

·         Experience in aquaculture is not essential but desirable

·         Experience in EIAR is not essential but desirable

·         Excellent interpersonal skills

·         Ability to work independently

·         Ability to take guidance and instruction

·         Excellent computer skills including Word and Excel

·         Excellent organisational skills

 Contract Length: Minimum 12 months with scope for extension depending on performance and work requirements

 Location: Galway, Ireland

 Salary: A competitive salary is available based on qualifications and experience.


CVs should be sent by e-mail to Caroline Roche;

 Application deadline is Friday 25th January 2019