18 November 2015 Go back to News
Irish Water to invest €36 Million in water infrastructure in Galway
Irish Water, Ireland’s national water utility responsible for providing and developing water and wastewater services throughout Ireland, will invest over €36 million in a major programme of work to deliver new and upgraded drinking water infrastructure in the county. This will bring to €94 million the total investment by Irish Water in Galway’s water and wastewater infrastructure. Works have been prioritised to address the most critical issues in line with commitments outlined in Irish Water’s recently published Business Plan.
Speaking to IBEC’s Regional Executive Committee in Galway today, Ervia, Irish Water’s parent company, outlined the key objectives for the utility that will bring Ireland’s national water infrastructure to an acceptable level.
Over €21 Million to Upgrade Drinking Water Infrastructure
Irish Water has committed to a national programme to eliminate the risk of drinking water contamination by 2021. Approximately €9.5 million has been allocated to upgrade drinking water supplies and work to allow for the removal of 5 water supply schemes, including Leenane, Carraroe, Williamstown, Inis Oir and Inis Mean from the Environmental Protection Agencies (EPA) Remedial Action List (RAL) is already underway. These schemes, though generally supplying safe water, are not equipped to manage all of the risk factors which can result in samples failing one or more of the standards in the Drinking Water Regulations. The upgrade works will also allow for the lifting of boil water notices currently in place in Leenane and Williamstown.
Irish Water appointed a contractor in July 2015 for the installation of a temporary UV unit at the water treatment plant in Williamstown. These works are due to be completed in November 2015. The UV unit is intended as a temporary measure which, following a period of process proving and approval from the HSE and EPA, will allow for the boil water notice to be removed from this supply. Irish Water is also putting in place a long term solution to the issues in Williamstown consisting of an extension of the Lough Mask Regional Water Supply Service from Ballyhaunis to Williamstown.
An investment of approximately €9 million is also planned to extend the Tuam Regional Water Supply Scheme and provide security of supply for approximately 14,000 people in East Galway.
A number of projects are also progressing under Irish Water’s minor capital investment programme. Approximately €1.5 million will be invested to refurbish service reservoirs across Galway County and City with works expected to be completed in the second half of 2016. A further €0.8 million will also be invested in upgrading water treatment plants at Portumna, Ballinasloe, Gort and Spiddal. Improvements to the disinfection processes at a number of plants throughout the City and County is also being progressed, representing a total additional investment of approximately €0.75 million.
Over €15 Million Investment in Water Conservation and Watermain Rehabilitation
A programme of water mains rehabilitation to repair over 47km of defective water mains is also planned for Galway. This will vastly improve the quality and supply and generate savings of approximately 630 megalitres of water per year. €7.3 million will be invested in upgrading over 20km of defective water mains in Galway city. A further €7 million will be invested to upgrade approximately 19km of water mains in Carraroe, Loughrea, Spiddal and Inishmore. An upgrade of approximately 8km of water mains in Ballinasloe, Oranmore, Athenry and Headford and a 2.4km sewer network upgrade in Ballinasloe is also underway and expected to be completed at the start of 2016.
A number of water conservation and mains rehabilitation projects are also being progressed under Irish Water’s minor capital investment programme. These include €0.42 million to replace the watermain on Thomas Hynes Road and approximately €0.5 million on a leak repair programme across Galway City and County.
“This is a significant and much needed investment to repair and upgrade the water infrastructure of Galway City and County,” said Jerry Grant, Head of Asset Management, Irish Water. “We have prioritised the most urgent upgrades to eliminate the risk of drinking water contamination and allow for the removal of boil water notices in Williamstown and Leenane. This is a vital investment to ensure the water infrastructure can support existing and future social and economic development.”
Irish Water invested €340 million in improving water and waste water services in 2014 and will invest over €410 million in improving water services during 2015. This spend will increase over subsequent years. Capital investment in the region of €600 million per year is required for a sustained period of several decades, to address the acknowledged deficiencies in the country’s water infrastructure.