Low levels of raw water on the Aran Islands remains a priority

Finding a sustainable solution to low levels of raw water on the Aran Islands remains a priority for Irish Water. Demand for drinking water on the islands increases significantly during the summer months due to the large influx of tourists. This puts additional pressure on raw water supplies which are used to provide treated water. Water restrictions were in place on all three islands during the summer months with Irish Water appealing at the time to residents, businesses and visitors to the islands to conserve water wherever possible. Drinking water was tankered to Inis Oirr throughout the summer in order to maintain a supply.

Ensuring a safe supply of drinking water for the island

Drinking water quality has improved on each of the three islands following upgrades and improvement works to the water treatment plants on Inis Oirr, Inis Meáin and Inis Mór and a significant investment by us. The upgrade on Inis Meáin has led to the scheme being lifted of the Environmental Protection Agencies Remedial Action List, ensuring a safe supply of drinking water for the island.  

First Fix Free scheme

In a bid to reduce water demand Irish Water’s Leakage Reduction Programme working with Galway County Council and local caretakers is actively locating and repairing public side leaks. Private side leak repairs have been offered to the public through the First Fix Free scheme, along with advice and information on how to conserve water. For more information, please visit First Fix Free scheme.

Engaging with local communities on the islands

We have also engaged with local communities providing information workshops and water saving devices for large users on the islands. These took place on Inir Oirr in 2016 and Inis Mór in 2018. Leakage savings and water conservation will help to secure a resilient water supply for the islands.

Investigating alternative solutions to the reservoirs

Following a review of construction options, building reservoirs on Inis Oirr and Inis Meáin is currently not a viable solution. A design team has been appointed to investigate alternative solutions to the reservoirs. When detailed solutions become available they will be shared with local stakeholders.

Drinking Water Quality

For more information on the drinking water quality in your area, please view our Search Map.


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