The decision taken by Irish Water to cease a proposed development of a new water treatment plant at Killinure Lough has been welcomed by Ballykeeran Residents Association.
Speaking this week, Michael Hickey, Chairman, Ballykeeran Residents Association, welcomed the decision by Irish Water which comes at a time when the Department of Culture,Heritage and The Gaeltacht have established a group to explore the potential of awarding Lough Ree the “United Nations Educational Science and Cultural Organisation” (UNESCO ) biosphere designation.
“This year, our residents association engaged a professional ecologist to carry an ecology report on the inner lakes which is now complete. We will now be making a written submission, to this interdepartmental group, drawing on the information from this report, to support this designation. It is worth noting that the inner lakes has the highest concentration of reed beds than any other part of Lough Ree and therefore supports a large lake bird population. In the interest of a richer environment, local communities can make a difference when they work together and be proactive in conserving and restoring the local wild and natural areas and preserve them for the enjoyment of future generations. We have much to defend,” the Chairman commented.
In recent months Irish Water reviewed the proposed development of a new water treatment plant at Killinure Lough and decided that the best option for the current and future supply of water for Athlone is to carry out an upgrade of the existing water treatment plant at Custume Bridge. The proposed upgrade will be subject to the normal statutory processes.
Providing a safe and resilient water supply to Athlone Town and environs is a priority for Irish Water. Irish Water will now progress plans to upgrade the existing Water Treatment Plant in Athlone and we will update you as the project progresses. The revised scheme will still have the capacity to treat and supply the current and future water supply demands of Athlone.
Speaking about the project, Asset Planning Manager with Irish Water, Mark Macaulay, noted, “Irish Water is focused on the safe and secure supply of water to communities all over the country. In Athlone, we have rescoped our plans to ensure that we safeguard drinking water for the future. We will continue to keep the local community updated as the project progresses.”