Subsurface Training and Outreach Centre, Clare
A geosciences training and outreach centre in west Clare, Ireland, is in the initial phases of development. For geoscientists working with or in industry, the value of the Pennsylvanian geology of the area lies in its analogy with hydrocarbon-bearing, deltaic to deep-water sedimentary successions on several continental margins, such as in the Gulf of Mexico. A programme of behind-outcrop drilling involving UCD and Statoil has acquired over 1,350 m of core from 12 boreholes behind the sea cliffs of the Loop Head peninsula. The new subsurface data have high value as an analogue dataset for use in training and reservoir characterisation. The cliffs are also visited by tourists and special interest groups such as bird watching groups. It is envisioned that the centre will involve the local community and wider public, facilitating links between natural resources, energy and environment.