senator John Whelan has stressed the urgency of the development of the Garryhinch Water Project to his colleagues in the Seanad.
Addressing the Seanad, last week, Fergus O’Dowd, Minister with responsibility for Irish Water and New Era, reiterated his and the Government’s unequivical commitment to the Garryhinch Water Project.
“The Minister acknowledged that without the provision of a new reservoir resource that the greater Leinster region will run short of water and experience rationing by 2020,” Senator Whelan said.
The Labour Senator urged the Minister to personally intervene to ensure that the Garryhinch Project progresses.
“I therefore urged the Minister to knock heads together and to expedite the development and construction of the Garryhinch Water Project in the interest of job creation, economic growth and securing foreign direct investment such as at installations like Intel.
“I told the Minister there was no scope for any further delays and that Bord na Mona’s proposal for Garryhinch was economicically, ecologically and environmentally sound and sustainable,” he said.
Senator Whelan added: “It has the capacity not only to create hundreds of jobs and secure a safe and sustainable supply of water for the Leinster region but also to be multi-purpose as an angling, nature reserve and recreational centre similar to Grafham Water and Rutland Water in the UK which I visited recently toassess first hand the potential and prospects for such an amenity in Laois-Offaly.£
The Garryhinch Water Project, which was first announced by Born na Móna in the summer of 2011, could take up to 10 years to complete. The project will cost €470million and employ up to 1,000 people during the construction phase. There may be over 100 employees involved in the running of the water park, and the operation and maintenance of the water park and treatment park.