Draft Regional Water Resources Plan – North West

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan – North West

The development of the Regional Water Resources Plan North West (RWRP-NW) will allow Uisce Éireann for the first time to review water supply needs collectively for the entire North West region and across the spectrum of risk including quality, quantity, reliability, and sustainability. It allows us to consider local options to resolve these needs and larger regional options that can address needs across multiple supplies.

As part of the draft RWRP-NW Uisce Éireann will review needs across 119 water supplies and identify options to address these needs. The plan will allow us to consider local options that can resolve needs within individual supplies and regional options that can address needs across multiple supplies. The outcome of the draft RWRP-NW includes:

  • Merging supply systems within the region to form 17 larger interconnected Water Resource Zones, reducing the number of Water Resource Zones in the North West Region from 119 to 78.
  • Upgrading 105 existing water treatment plants (WTPs) to reduce water quality risks across all WRZs.
  • Increasing the capacity of 45 (of the remaining 105) WTPs to address the current supply deficit and to meet forecast growth.
  • Interconnecting supplies via 733 kilometres of trunk mains.
  • Development of 12 new water treatment plants.
  • Eventual decommissioning of 37 water treatment plants.
  • Reducing leakage to 23% of regional demand through pressure management, active leakage control and targeted asset replacement.

The outcomes and benefits of this Regional Preferred Approach include:

Improved performance across all of the water supplies in terms of Quality and Quantity;

Strategic transformation from the existing fragmented supply to a more resilient and sustainable interconnected supply; and

Ability to support growth and economic development across the North West Region.

North West Region

The Region covers approximately 26,900 square kilometres (representing about 40% of the Republic of Ireland) and extends from the Shannon Estuary on the Southern boundary of County Clare to County Donegal, which borders Northern Ireland. The area also includes eight islands off the coast of Ireland, namely Inishmore, Inishmean, Inishere, Inisboffin, Inishturk, Clare Island, Achill Island and Arranmore Island. The region is supported by a strong network of key towns that provide secure employment and economic growth potential. Uisce Éireann supplies around 369 million litres of water per day to a population of 732,700 people and 74,137 businesses in the North West region. This represents more than 21% of Uisce Éireann’s total supply nationally.

Find your townland

A list of the cities, towns, villages, and townlands covered by this Regional plan is available in the links below. The information provided in the townlands, towns and settlement lists that are included in the Regional Water Resources Plan North West are sourced from Ordnance Survey Ireland.

Study Area Technical Reports

To deliver the draft RWRP-NW, we subdivided the region into smaller units to enable us to manage the process of identifying potential water supply solutions (options) and the selection of our Preferred Approaches to resolve our water supply and water quality deficits. These smaller units are referred to as Study Areas.

A detailed Technical Report is provided for each Study Area describing the solution types at Study Area level and providing a summary of the detailed Option and Approach Development process and resulting outcomes for each Study Area.

The Study Area technical reports are provided as appendices to the draft RWRP-NW document.

The North West Region comprises seven Study Areas as shown in the image below.

The North West Region comprises seven Study Areas as shown in the image.


Uisce Éireann is committed to continuously engaging with stakeholders and we encourage feedback as we work through the development of the RWRP North West.

If you would like to be part of an online public webinar as part of the consultation on the draft RWRP North West plan and associated environmental reports, and for Uisce Éireann representatives to answer any questions you may have that will assist you in making your submission, please register your interest via the following links:

Regional Water Resources Plan North West Webinar Recording

If you're not able to attend any of the above public webinars, check out the pre-recording of the presentation below to give you an overview of the draft plan.

Regional Water Resources Plan North West Webinar Recording

How can I get involved?

Uisce Éireann is now seeking feedback through public consultation on the draft RWRP-North West and associated SEA Environmental Report and Natura Impact Statement.

A thirteen-week consultation will run from the 22 November 2022 to 21 February 2023, during which time the draft RWRP North West and associated environmental reports can be viewed and downloaded from the website and at your local authority’s planning office during their normal opening hours. Information on the consultation can be viewed on the RWRP-NW consultation leaflet. This is your opportunity to feed into the process of how Uisce Éireann identifies the issues in the region and determines what the opportunities are to provide a more resilient water supply in your area. Uisce Éireann is also seeking your feedback on how it will develop options to address any problems identified, before applying them to specific areas. Our information brochure has more detail on the RWRP-NW and the public consultation that is underway.

Have your say

Any member of the public wishing to make a submission can do so by email or post by 21 February 2022 as follows:


Post: National Water Resources Plan, Uisce Éireann, P.O. Box 13216, Glenageary, Co. Dublin

Freephone: 1800 46 36 76

A dedicated helpline is available for anyone who would like to discuss any aspect of the consultation prior to making a submission. 

All submissions will be taken into consideration and responses to the issues raised will be summarised in a Consultation Report, which will be published in 2023.

Submissions will not be responded to individually, but each will be listed in the consultation report. Individual submissions will be reported anonymously and feedback from organisations will be attributed to them.

Feedback received outside the scope of the draft RWRP-NW and the associated environmental reports will not be considered as part of this public consultation process and will not be reported on. Any feedback in relation to in flight Uisce Éireann projects, or in reference to any other area of the Uisce Éireann business should be sent directly to those project teams, unless applicable to how they are included in the RWRP-NW. Uisce Éireann project contact details can be found here.

In line with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) effective from 25 May 2018, Uisce Éireann’s updated Privacy Notice, is available to view online here.

RWRP North West Public Consultation Roadmap

Find your local authority’s planning office

Hard copies of the draft RWRP-NW and associated documents are available to view at Local Authority Planning offices by appointment. To find your nearest Local Authority’s planning office, please use the download link.

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan – North West

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan: North West

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan: North West Table of Contents

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan: North West Glossary

Note: Note: Two information files from the draft RWRP-NW have also been extracted from the documents for use by the EPA during the consultation process.

  1. “WTP Overview” which shows the consolidated Water Treatment Plant data for the region. A link to this has been provided on the website.
  2. “Proposed new and increased abstractions data for the North West Region”, which shows the consolidated Abstraction data for the region. In accordance with Article 8 2(a)(iii) Directive (EU) 2020/2184, the recast Drinking Water Directive which states that “geo-references for all abstraction points in the catchment areas; given that those data are potentially sensitive, in particular in the context of public health and public security, the Member States shall ensure that such data are protected and communicated only to the relevant authorities and water supplies”, this information will not be published.

Consultation Questions

In order to help members of the public or organisations in making a submission, and to ensure clarity on the scope of what we would like consultees to consider in their feedback, Uisce Éireann is inviting submissions on the following questions. However, this is just an aide and all submissions received in response to the consultation will be considered.

  1. In section 2 of the draft RWRP-NW, we set out information on the current situation in the Region in respect of the population growth and economic development and how we considered this in our water resource planning approach. Do you have any comments on this?  
  2. Within the North West region, we consider 119 water supplies (Water Resource Zones) represented across 7 Study Areas. Do you have any comments on the Study Areas?    
  3. Section 3 of the draft RWRP-NW and each of the technical appendices 1-7 outline the need in terms of water quality, quantity, sustainability and resilience across the region and in each of the Study Areas. Do you have any comment on the need (deficit)?  
  4. Sections 4, 7 and 8 of the draft RWRP-NW and the technical appendices 1-7 set out solutions we can undertake to address some of these needs in the interim, while we develop the preferred approaches. Do you have you any comments on this? 
  5. Section 6 and the technical appendices 1-7 of the draft RWRP-NW summarise our process for developing options to address the needs in the NW Region. Do you have any comments on this process? 
  6. Section 7 sets out how we identify our Preferred Approach to addressing the need at WRZ and Study Area level. Each of the technical appendices for Study Areas 1-7 (A-G) and the Environmental Review for Study Areas 1-7 (A-G) set out how the Preferred Approach has been identified in more detail. Have you any feedback on this?  
  7. The draft RWRP-NW looks at a range of solutions to meet the need in a WRZ or Study Area. These solutions are not limited by distance, therefore, some solutions for the WRZ or Study Area will involve transfers from outside the relevant WRZ or Study Area. Have you any comments on the Regional Preferred Approach?     
  8. Do you have any comments on the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Environmental Report and Natura Impact Statement (NIS), which accompany the draft RWRP-NW?  
  9. We have produced an RWRP Consultation Roadmap. Do you have any comments on this?    
  10. How would you like Uisce Éireann to communicate with you as the RWRPs progress?   

Regional Water Resources Plan North West video