9 February 2022
By Tom Collins
People in Cork are being asked for their views on what can be done to improve water quality in local rivers, lakes and coastal waters. A public consultation on the Draft River Basin Management Plan is currently underway, and this is your chance to have a say.
Agencies responsible for protecting Ireland’s rivers have found that issues with urban wastewater agriculture and forestry are the leading causes of pollution in our rivers, lakes, estuaries, and coastal waters.
“There’s a big effort involving a lot of organisations trying to pinpoint what’s happening in our rivers. We need local people to help us get a better understanding”, says Catherine Seale-Duggan, of the Local Authority Waters Programme, also known as LAWPRO. She continues, “We live in unprecedented times. The effects of climate change and loss of biodiversity are clear, and this will have knock-on effects for our health and well-being. This is especially true with water quality in our rivers and coastal waters.”
LAWPRO works with the 31 local authorities in Ireland, assessing the condition and health of our rivers. While some rivers have improved, unfortunately, half the rivers and lakes in Ireland are failing to meet good water quality standards. “We need urgent action to stop the decline, reverse the damage, and protect these vital natural resources”, she says.
James O’Keeffe, a dairy farmer and an outdoor enthusiast from Lismire noted that “my farm is adjacent to a tributary of the River Allow. I participate in the Duhallow Farming for Blue Dot Catchments EIP project and water quality monitoring by the project team has shown that the stream on my land is very healthy. This is something I take great pride in. I believe it is very important that we protect our rivers to ensure that there is a clean and healthy water environment for future generations, and I want our children to be able to kayak down their local river which will be vibrant with wildlife”. He stated that he would be attending the LAWPRO community consultation meetings for the next River Basin Management Plan as he believed that “it is crucially important that community members, like myself, to have an input into the design of this plan. This ensures that the issues in our own local river catchment are addressed and that our own ideas for how our river catchment can be improved are taken on board”.
People are asked to register and attend one of the four consultation meetings being held this February. The meetings will provide vital information on the Draft River Basin Management Plan for Ireland 2022-2027, a questions and answers session, and a discussion on local issues.
“This is your chance to have your say and put forward your views on what needs to be done to help the natural waters of Cork,” says Catherine Seale-Duggan, of the Local Authority Waters Programme. Register for your local meeting using the links below
|Cork||Cork City||Lee, Cork Harbour and Youghal Bay Catchments||15/02/2022||19:30||https://bit.ly/3IdbmdC||Community Water Officer:
|Cork||Kanturk-Mallow & Fermoy MD’s||Blackwater Catchment||17/02/2022||19:30||https://bit.ly/3rjRwXc||Community Water Officer:
|Cork||West Cork & Bandon-Kinsale MD’s||Bandon-ilen & Bantry Bay Catchments||21/02/2022||19:30||https://bit.ly/3tvg3eF||Community Water Officer:
|Cork||Macroom, Carrigaline, Cobh & East Cork MD’s||Lee, Cork Harbour and Youghal Bay Catchments||23/02/2022||19:30||https://bit.ly/33iLyhr||Community Water Officer:
For further information on the state of the environment in Ireland see this report https://www.epa.ie/our-services/monitoring–assessment/assessment/irelands-environment/state-of-environment-report-/