Fianna Fáil TD for Roscommon/Galway Eugene Murphy has welcomed the recent announcement by the Minister of State Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran in relation to alleviating the risk of flooding in the River Shannon region. However he noted that it was imperative that such works proceed as quickly as possible as the time for continuous reports had come to an end.
Deputy Murphy, the Fianna Fáil spokesperson on the OPW and flood relief, said that a lack of a proper maintenance programme for the River Shannon had caused widespread devastation for decades.
“There are major problems with overgrowth and peat and silt deposits in the River Shannon, particularly in the Lanesboro/Ballyleague area which is heavily dependent on tourism and fishing from the famed hot stretch of water, and the River Shannon is clogged very badly there at the moment. I have long called for an interagency approach for maintenance of the River Shannon,” said Deputy Murphy.
“I welcome Minister Moran’s recent announcements in relation to flood alleviation works in County Leitrim even though it is very late in the year. We had a fantastic year weather wise for 2018 so I fail to understand why much of this work could not have been carried out earlier in the year. We are heading into winter now so it is imperative that a schedule of works is identified and carried out as quickly as possible. Dredging and the removal of debris have been long overdue on the River Shannon and I would also call for the targeting of pinch points along the Shannon to be given top priority.
“We don’t need more and more reports and study after study," he continued. "Let’s stop all the reports and just get to work on it. I will be vigorously pursuing this issue to ensure that action is taken as for too long now we have seen farmlands, businesses, and homes suffering from the poor management of the River Shannon.”