Irish Water staff talk about the important role we can all play in protecting our local environment

Staff from Irish Water paid a visit to St Mary’s Junior School and Girls Senior School in Dunmanway to talk about the important role we can all play in protecting our local environment by being more careful about what we flush down the toilet.

‘Think Before You Flush’ was the key message for Dunmanway students who learned all about common items that are flushed down the toilet, but can cause blockages in sewers and water treatment plants, and can lead to pollution of the marine environment.

Worst offenders: baby wipes, cotton wool buds, nappies, plasters and cigarettes

Among the worst offenders are baby wipes, cotton wool buds, nappies, plasters and cigarettes.  These items don’t break down in waste water and as a result can cause severe blockages in the sewer network and treatment plants. They can also end up getting into our rivers, lakes and oceans and cause harm to fish and other marine life.

During their visit, the team from Irish Water performed simple experiments, comparing what happens when toilet tissue and wet wipes are flushed down the toilet.

The Three Ps

The message was simple: The only things that should be flushed down the toilet are the three Ps – pee, poo and (toilet) paper. Everything else should go in the bin.

The pupils were enthusiastic in their support for the ‘Think Before You Flush’ campaign and agreed to help Irish Water spread this message to the wider community in Dunmanway.

Aisling Buckley, Irish Water’s Regional Information Specialist, commented “We were delighted to have the opportunity to visit the pupils in St Mary’s Junior School and Girls Senior School in Dunmanway. We got a lovely warm welcome and it was very heartening to see how much the pupils care about their local environment and want to do everything they can to protect it.

“We spoke to the pupils about the ‘Nasty Nine’ items that should never be flushed down the toilet and should be binned instead. Irish Water’s Operations team flagged that there are operational issues in the wastewater network in Dunmanway, due to baby wipes being flushed down the toilet. We asked the students in St. Mary’s to help us with our communications campaign by telling their families, friends and neighbours all about the Nasty Nine. Given their enthusiastic response, I have no doubt that they will take the message on board and encourage others to do the same. We all have a role to play in protecting our precious local environment by being more careful with what we put into our toilets and down our sinks.”

For more information on preventing blockages and protecting the environment, visit our page on How to prevent blockages or visit http://thinkbeforeyouflush.org/.  

Cork

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