20 May 2022

OPW still hasn't got to the bottom of dried up overgrown Emo Court lake

Emo Court lake in Laois is running low on water and is 'an eyesore'

The lake at Emo Court in Laois. Photo © Colin Park (cc-by-sa/2.0)

The possibility that water that supplies Emo Court's lake has been 'siphoned' off has yet to be investigated but but there are still plans to do so.

So Laois Minister Sean Fleming has been informed by his Ministerial colleague who oversees the Office of Public Works which manages the Laois estate.

Minister of State Patrick O'Donovan has replied in writing the Laois Offaly TD about the lake which has been the subject of ongoing public concern over the low level of water and build up of vegetation.

"The water level in the lake at Emo Court is very low but is improving. This is a regular occurrence but it is particularly bad this year after a very dry summer.

"The lake at Emo is an integral part of the site and we cherish its aesthetic value as well as its importance to the local ecology and biodiversity. The lake is supplied from a spring located some four miles upstream.

"OPW is commissioning a survey of the watercourse to investigate the route for signs of blockage or syphoning. At the moment OPW is supplementing the lake water supply from a local on-site well.

"This is an on-going problem that OPW is attempting to resolve and we hope the investigation and report will help us understand what the physical issues might be with the watercourse and will make recommendations as to how OPW might
address them," he said in the reply.

Minister of State Fleming said the lake at Emo Court is man-made supplied by a spring located approximately 4 miles away. 

"Many people who visit this location often remark that the amount of vegetation on the bed of the lake is taking over the lake when in fact the problem is the water levels in the lake are dropping and thereby exposing the vegetation on the lake bed," he said.

In saying this the Laois Offaly Fianna Fáil TD said he would like the issue of the disappearing lake to then be dealt with.

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