Portumna public water supply removed from Remedial Action List following Irish Water works

The Portumna water supply has been removed from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA ) Remedial Action List (RAL ) following a programme of upgrade works to the treatment plant by Irish Water.

Last May, the Portumna water supply was deemed to be THM-compliant by the EPA who then changed the scheme’s categorisation on the RAL to ‘treatment and management issues’. Upon completion of a year-long programme of works to enhance process optimisation procedures at the plant, along with upgrade works, the scheme has been removed from the list.

Last year there were 13 Galway water supplies on the RAL, but due to significant investment by Irish Water this has been reduced to three with ongoing works taking place at these plants to ensure their removal from the EPA’s action list.

This work comes in the aftermath of seven long term boil water notices being lifted on water supplies in Co Galway last year which benefited 22,834 people who no longer have to boil their water before consumption, making Galway currently a boil water notice-free zone.

The remaining schemes on the RAL are Ballinasloe Regional Water Supply Scheme, Inishmean, and Williamstown Public Supply which are all on the RAL due to elevated levels of THMs in the water.

Irish Water has put in place the first national THM 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.

THMs, or Trihalomethanes 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.

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