Rid beaches of sanitary waste with Community for Clean Estuary group and Donegal politicians

Irish Water today (Monday) met with members of the Community for Clean Estuary group and elected officials in Co Donegal in two separate meetings where they discussed the utility’s plans to develop much-needed wastewater infrastructure in Moville.

Moville has no municipal wastewater treatment facilities currently

At present Moville has no municipal wastewater treatment facilities and the discharge of untreated wastewater into the Bredagh River has seen it classified as being ‘Seriously Polluted’ by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Untreated wastewater from Moville is currently being discharged into the Bredagh River and Lough Foyle at five locations polluting the beaches and coastline. Unsightly photos of sanitary waste have been captured on the coastline. A new wastewater treatment plant and collection system is needed to end this practice. The equivalent of approximately 2,800 wheelie bins of untreated wastewater are currently being discharged into Lough Foyle and the Bredagh River every day and we plan to build a wastewater treatment plant in Moville to ensure that untreated wastewater is no longer discharged in the river and lough.

New plant will stop ongoing pollution at local beaches

The new plant will facilitate the decommissioning of more than 15 temporary treatment plants in housing developments in Moville and allow for applications to be made to connect them to the public sewer. It will stop ongoing pollution at local beaches; facilitate social and economic development and ensure compliance with national and EU regulations relating to the treatment and discharge of wastewater.

The main concern raised at today’s meetings included the location of the outfall pipe. However, our representatives were able to dispel the myth that discharges from the new treatment plant would pollute the coastline and destroy the beaches. In fact, the opposite is true. The new treatment plant will dramatically improve the water quality along the coastline ensuring the beaches are protected from wastewater pollution.

Storm water will not be discharged from the proposed Carnagarve site to Lough Foyle. All storm water management will take place at the proposed River Row pumping station site.

Moville is currently one of the highest priority schemes

Elected officials expressed their disappointment at Greencastle not being included in the current scope of the project. We advised that Moville is currently one of the highest priority schemes due to the ongoing discharge of untreated wastewater from the public sewerage system. The current design will enable the connection of Greencastle at a future date. 

Speaking following today’s meeting, Colm Claffey, Irish Water said: “Today’s meetings provided us with a great opportunity to hear and discuss in an open environment the concerns of the Community for Clean Estuary group. We were delighted to be able to clarify some misinformation that had been circulating and to impress on them and the elected officials at a later meeting the absolute need for this essential infrastructure to end the unacceptable discharge of untreated effluent on the beaches in Moville and dramatically improve the quality of bathing water."

“We were delighted to be able to clarity how storm water will be managed and that no storm water will be discharged at the proposed treatment plant at Carnagarve. We look forward to progressing with the project and delivering a state of the art wastewater treatment plant for the people of Moville.”

New scheme will improve water quality

Currently the discharge of untreated wastewater is polluting the River Bredagh and Lough Foyle, and detracts from the amenity value of the river and the coastal waters around Moville. The new sewerage scheme will bring benefits to the area in terms of health, integrity of the environment and improved water quality for all. Cleaner water will enhance Moville’s amenity value and act as a platform for social, economic and population development. The project will also ensure that the water quality standards set down by regulatory bodies will be achieved.

“Irish Water will continue to engage with the local community over the course of the project’s development. We would like to thank those who attended our first information evening and acknowledge the widespread support we received for this project on the night. We look forward to continued engagement with our stakeholders as plans for this project progresses,” added Colm.

More information

Further information and a Frequently Asked Question document about this proposed scheme is available on our Moville Project Page.

Donegal

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