Irish Water has confirmed a €7.3 million investment in wastewater infrastructure at South Beach, Rush, one of seven beaches nationally that was rated as ‘poor’ in the recently published EPA Bathing Water Quality Report. This significant investment will provide a new system to collect and transfer wastewater from existing outfalls and overflows to the foreshore and onwards to the new wastewater treatment plant at Portrane.

The project in Rush, involving extensive pipelines and new pumping stations is already at detailed design stage with the tender process beginning shortly. Irish Water expects that work will get underway in Rush in mid 2016 and take approximately two years to complete. This Rush project will complete a major scheme in this area, which has already diverted wastewater flow from Lusk to the Portrane plant since 2012.

This €7.3m investment in Rush will address longstanding problems with bathing water quality in this area", said Jerry Grant, Head of Asset Management at Irish Water. “The EPA Report highlights the need for a national water utility that can approach the obvious deficits in our wastewater treatment infrastructure in a strategic way”, said Jerry Grant Head of Asset Management at IW. “It is not acceptable in a modern economy that so many of our towns are discharging raw sewage directly into the environment and Irish Water is targeting those most in need of investment as our top priority to protecting the environment and allow for growth”, Jerry Grant said.

The report on water quality monitored during the 2014 Bathing Water Season, reflects the many issues which can contaminate beach areas, including direct sewage discharge, diluted sewage discharge from overflows in wet weather as well as contaminated agricultural and other catchment runoff. Irish Water projects are already underway to bring all 7 sites named in the EPA report up to the required standards as soon as possible.

In reference to overall bathing water quality Jerry Grant, Irish Water said “Notwithstanding the information provided in the EPA report and the firm commitment of Irish Water to upgrade & operate our waste water treatment plants to the highest standards, it is worth acknowledging that Irish bathing waters continue to be among the best in northern Europe. Maintaining these high water quality standards is dependent on the successful operation of wastewater treatment into plants and networks right around our coast and ensuring the long term capacity of these plants is secured the future”.

Dublin

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