Deadline nears to submit feedback on plans to supply water to homes and businesses in the South West region

10 August 2022

Irish Water’s public consultation on the draft Regional Water Resource Plan – South West (RWRP-SW) is closing in two weeks’ time, on 24 August 2022. The plan sets out options for providing a more secure, reliable and sustainable water supply for approximately 594,000 customers in the South West region over the next 25 years. A 12 week public consultation on the plan began early in June and will close on Wednesday 24 August. 

Irish Water’s National Water Resources Plan will be the first resources plan for the entire public water supply in Ireland. The National Plan will identify the needs across our existing supplies and the challenges and opportunities that we face over the coming years including legislation, climate change, the environment, growth and economic development. 

Given the scale of the area to be covered, the National Plan is being rolled out in 2 phases. The National Plan was first adopted in the summer of 2021 and Irish Water has since moved into phase 2, which has 4 separate Regional Water Resources Plans. 

The four regions are:

  • Regional Water Resources Plan: North West 
  • Regional Water Resources Plan: South West
  • Regional Water Resources Plan: South East 
  • Regional Water Resources Plan: Eastern and Midlands   

Each Regional Plan is subject to its own consultation and, once adopted, all of the Regional Plans and the Framework Plan will be treated as a unified National Plan.  

Public consultation on the draft Regional Water Resources Plan - South West will continue until 24 August 2022. 

The draft RWRP-SW describes the South West Region and the current challenges faced now and into the future in terms of delivering a safe, secure and resilient water supply. It identifies progress made to date for instance, leakage reductions, capital investment works, and works in progress. 

There are 227 Water Treatment Plants (WTPs) in the South West Region, which collectively serve approximately 594,000 people or 14% of the population of Ireland, via approximately 7,923 kilometres of distribution network and 174 Water Resource Zones. These treatment plants also serve 45,000 businesses. The region itself covers approximately 13,000 square kilometres, extending from the southern tip of the Iveragh Peninsula in the south-west of County Kerry, north to the Shannon Estuary, and south-east where it meets the Celtic Sea at Youghal in County Cork.

Speaking ahead of the final two weeks of the public consultation, Mairéad Conlon, Asset Planning Water Specialist, for Irish Water said, “We would like to thank those who have engaged with us on the plan so far. We received valuable feedback throughout the consultation from individuals, groups and organisations. We would like to remind those who are interested in sending their submissions in response to the public consultation to do so before Wednesday, 24 August."

The development of a draft plan on how Irish Water will supply water across the South West region is an important step. The draft Regional Plan will offer key benefits in terms of transformation of our supplies, including the ability to cater for growth and economic development in a sustainable way, improved interconnectivity between our supplies to ensure balanced regional development, and new sustainable water sources that are adaptable to climate change."

The draft plan sets out how we envisage water will be supplied to homes and businesses across Cork, Kerry and parts of Limerick and Waterford over the next 25 years. Our team compiled a list of Questions and Answers from public webinars held earlier in the consultation and they are now available on our website to help those who wish to send their feedback on the draft plan. A recorded webinar is also available on our website for anyone interested,” explained Mairéad. 

Irish Water is seeking feedback on the public consultation for the draft RWRP- SW and associated SEA Environmental Report and Natura Impact Statement. The documents are available to view at www.water.ie/rwrp/southwest.

A 12-week statutory public consultation will continue until 24 August 2022.

Submissions can be made by post or email by 24 August 2022.

Email: nwrp@water.ie

Post: National Water Resources Plan, Irish Water, PO Box 13216, Glenageary, Co. Dublin 

This public consultation is everyone’s opportunity to feed into the process of how Irish Water identifies the water supply issues in the region and determines what the options are to provide a more resilient water supply to customers within the region. 

A list of Questions and Answers from our Public Webinars, as well as a recording of a webinars, are available at www.water.ie/rwrp/southwest.

All submissions will be taken into consideration and responses to the issues raised will be summarised in a Consultation Report which will be published on www.water.ie/nwrp.