Irish Water has confirmed that works are progressing and are on target across the nine water supply schemes in Co Wicklow that are on the Environmental Protection Agencies (EPA) Remedial Action List (RAL) which was published last week. Irish Water is investing in on-going projects to address the different risks to the water supplies.

Works carried out by Irish Water over recent years and months has seen a vast improvement in the quality of drinking water being delivered to the public in Wicklow. The Arklow Water Supply was removed from the RAL in 2016 benefiting over 15,000 people. 

The nine water supplies on the RAL are Roundwood, Aughrim/Annacurra, Avoca/Ballinclash, Enniskerry, Wicklow Regional Public Supply, Bray, Greystones/Windgates/Templecarrig, Kilmacanogue and Newton Newscaslte Kilcoole.

The Avoca/Ballinclash, Enniskerry and Wicklow Regional Public Supply are on the RAL due to elevated Trihalomethanes (THMs).

THMs are chemicals formed by the reaction of naturally occurring dissolved organic material and chlorine which is used for disinfection in order to protect against pathogenic bacteria.

Irish Water has put in place the first national THMs plan and a prioritised programme of investment to address all inadequacies in drinking water parameters including THMs. By 2021 the utility plans to reduce the number of schemes on the RAL to zero with an investment of €327 million in upgrading water supplies at risk from THMs.

To help remove eight of the water supplies from the RAL Irish Water is progressing plans to upgrade the Vartry Treatment Plant and to construct a new pipeline and additional structures for the transfer of treated drinking water from Vartry to Callowhill. The new treatment plant, along with other planned upgrades to the existing site, will secure the water supply for the long-term and ensure the scheme continues to meet all drinking water standards.

Work has been carried out to upgrade the Avoca/ Ballinclash water treatment plant. Final commissioning and process proving of the plant is currently underway. The new plant is due to enter production in the coming weeks. This work will help to facilitate the removal of the plant from the RAL.

Speaking about the RAL and the ongoing work in Wicklow, Irish Water’s Regional Compliance Specialist Andrew Boylan said: “The publication of the latest RAL update is a confirmation of the focus and dedication of Irish Water in ensuring the delivery of clean and wholesome water in the county.

As a single utility Irish Water is able to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the performance of Ireland’s drinking water production plants and where serious compliance challenges are found they can be tackled more effectively and efficiently. Significant improvements are being achieved year on year by this approach, including in Co Wicklow where the Arklow Water Supply was removed from the RAL last year and where there are no boil water notices in place.”

Wicklow

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