Irish Water appeal to people to conserve water over drought fears

Heatwave forecast for this week

Express Reporter

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Express Reporter

Irish Water appeal to people to conserve water over drought fears

Irish Water appeal to people to conserve water over drought fears

Irish Water is appealing to people to conserve water as a prolonged dry spell of weather forecast for this week has been compared to 1976 when drought conditions were experienced.

Irish Water’s Drought Management Team are monitoring water supplies and demand around the country on a daily basis.

Met Eireann has issued a national high temperature warning for the week as temperatures are set to soar. In several areas around the country where water supplies were already under pressure, warm weather has made the situation worse. 

Demand for water is increasing while levels in rivers and lakes are dropping significantly which means that is there is less water available to treat and supply to homes and businesses.

This year has seen extended dry spells and Met Éireann has compared this to 1976 when drought conditions were experienced across the country.

Already some areas in Athlone, Kilkenny and north Dublin have experienced outages and restrictions and areas in Donegal and Mullingar have been identified as being at risk.

In the Greater Dublin Area demand has already risen to concerning levels.

In the summer of 2017, an average of 565 mega litres of water per day was used. However, last Friday in the Greater Dublin Area 602 mega litres of water was used which is very close to the limit of sustainable production.

Kate Gannon is Irish Water’s Corporate Affairs Manager.

“If demand does not decrease we will start to see homes and businesses on the edge of the network in the Greater Dublin Area experience shortages, as happened in Skerries in recent weeks. The longer this continues, the more people will be at risk of shortages and outages.

“Irish Water’s Leakage Reduction Programme has teams are on the ground now but we also need the public’s support to reduce their water usage. The top three measures that people can take are not using a hose to water the garden or wash cars; keeping paddling pools very shallow if they are being used; and taking short showers rather than baths.

“Our Drought Management Team are monitoring the situation daily across the country but if everyone can take these simple steps, it will help us to manage supply and demand. This is a very serious situation and we are seeking the public’s help. Every effort the public make to conserve water will benefit them and their community," she said.