Five water supplies in Co Galway have been removed from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA ) latest Remedial Action List (RAL ) which was published this week.
The schemes are Ballyconnelly Public Supply, Carraroe Public Water Supply, Cleggan/Claddaghduff Water Supply, Kilconnell Public Water Supply, and Leenane Public Supply. This represents a significant investment by Irish Water in Co Galway which has been acknowledged by the EPA in their latest RAL update.
This comes in the aftermath of seven boil water notices being lifted on water supplies in Co Galway last year which benefitted 22,834 people who no longer have to boil their water before consumption.
Welcoming this latest RAL update Irish Water’s regional compliance specialist Pat O’Sullivan said: “The publication of the latest RAL update is a confirmation of the focus and dedication of Irish Water and Galway County Council in ensuring the delivery of clean and wholesome water in the county. Works are advancing on the four remaining schemes which we are confident of delivering by year end.”
Only six months ago, there were 13 Galway water schemes still on the RAL but this has been reduced to four, following the removal of four plants in the last RAL update in November and the five announced this week.
The remaining schemes are Ballinasloe Regional Water Supply Scheme, Inishmean, Portumna Public Supply, and Williamstown Public Supply, all of which are on the RAL due to elevated levels of THMs in the water.
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.
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.
The Inishmean supply, which serves a population of 348 people was added to the last RAL for elevated levels of THMs in the water. Irish Water has identified the solution and is working to have these works completed before the end of the year.
The utility is carrying out upgrade works to the Ballinasloe Water Treatment Plant which supplies a population of 10,279 people, and the utility is also carrying out works in Portumna to benefit 2,719 local consumers.
The remaining Galway scheme is Williamstown which supplies 1,348 people. This scheme was on a boil water notice which was lifted last year after significant improvements to the treatment process and the installation of a UV system was implemented by Irish Water. The longer term plan is to connect this scheme to the Lough Mask Regional Water Supply and plans for this are being progressed with an estimated completion date of December 2017.