Draft Regional Water Resources Plan - South West

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan – South West

The development of the Regional Water Resources Plan South West (RWRP-SW) will allow Irish Water for the first time to review water supply needs collectively for the entire South 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-SW Irish Water will review needs across 174 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-SW includes: 

  • Reducing the number of Water Resource Zones in the South West Region from 174 to 92. 
  • Development of larger interconnected Water Resource Zones for the urban areas in the region. 
  • Upgrading 137 existing water treatment plants to reduce water quality risks across all WRZs.
  • Interconnecting supplies via 644 kilometres of trunk mains. 
  • Development of 17 new water treatment plants. 
  • Eventual decommissioning 90 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 the water supplies in terms of quality and quantity. 
  • Strategic transformation from the existing fragmented supply to a more resilient and sustainable interconnected supply. 

South West Region

The Region covers approximately 13,000 square kilometres (representing about 20% of the Republic of Ireland) and extends from the southern tip of the country from the Iveragh Peninsula in the south west of County Kerry, north to the Shannon Estuary, and south east passing through county Cork into county Waterford to the Celtic Sea at Youghal. The region is supported by a strong network of key towns that provide secure employment and economic growth potential. Irish Water supplies around 316 million litres of water per day to a population of 594,400 people and 45,000 businesses in the South West region. This represents more than 18% of Irish Waters 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 South West are sourced from Ordnance Survey Ireland.

Regional planning areas

Study Area Technical Reports

To deliver the draft RWRP-SW, 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-SW document. The South West Region comprises three Study Areas as shown in the following image.

The draft RWRP South West consultation has now ended

The twelve-week statutory consultation on the RWRP – South West has now closed. Irish Water are no longer seeking feedback through public consultation on the draft RWRP: South West and associated SEA Environmental Report and Natura Impact Statement.  

Irish Water are now progressing with the third Regional Water Resources Plan – North West and will be inviting all customers and stakeholders for feedback on the draft Regional Water Resources Plan - North West and associated SEA Environmental Report and Natura Impact Statement (NIS) during the coming months.

Next Steps 

All feedback received from the RWRP: South West will be reviewed in a post-consultation submissions workshop with the NWRP technical team and relevant feedback incorporated into the final RWRP – South West  and associated SEA Statement and Appropriate Assessment Determination. How feedback from the consultation has influenced the final RWRP – South West will also be detailed in the consultation report and SEA Statement and AA Determination. Submissions from individuals will be reported anonymously and feedback from organisations will be attributed to them. Individual submissions will not be individually responded to but will be responded to in the consultation report.  

The submissions and observations received from the public consultation outlined above will be taken into consideration before adopting all four RWRPs. Once the complete NWRP has been finalised, compromising the Framework Plan and the four Regional Water Resources Plans and together they will be treated as a unified single plan. 

Regional Water Resources Plan - South West webinar recording

Questions and Answers from Public Webinars – South West

View Questions and Answers from Public Webinars

Next Steps

  1. Once the public consultation period has concluded, all feedback received during public consultation will be reviewed by the National Water Resource Plan team and all relevant feedback will be incorporated into the Post Consultation Report and, where appropriate, incorporated into the final Regional Water Resources Plan South West. 

  2. The remaining Regional Water Resource Plans North West and South East, will be consulted on in the same way, comprising both screening and scoping consultation with environmental authorities, followed by public consultations in 2022. 

  3. The submissions and observations received from the public consultation outlined above will be taken into consideration before adopting all four RWRPs. Once the complete NWRP has been finalised, compromising the Framework Plan and the four Regional Water Resources, they will be treated as a unified single plan. 

RWRP South West Public Consultation Roadmap

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan: South West Publications

Draft Regional Water Resources Plan - South West

Note: Note: Two information files from the draft RWRP-SW 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 South 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.

Regional Water Resources Plan South West video