Irish Water has renewed its appeal for the public to get involved in the consultation process on the proposed Water Supply Project, Eastern and Midlands Region.
The agency recently published its Options Working Paper (OWP) on the proposal in June outlining an independent review of all previous studies undertaken on providing a new source of water supply for the Eastern and Midlands region. The company says that finding a sustainable new source of drinking water to cater for population and economic growth in this area has been a key priority for the past decade.
The consultation period for this phase will run until August 4, 2015.
Ten options identified to date have already been evaluated as part of Strategic Environmental Assessments (2007-2011) which looked at environmental, technical, risk economic and socio-economic perspectives. No decision on a preferred option has been made to date.
Public consultation and further studies will form a key part of the decision making process to identify an emerging preferred option by late 2015.
Irish Water is inviting the public and interested groups to give their views on their proposed Constraints and Assessment Criteria (and the approach to their use) to identify an Emerging Preferred Option.
The four technically viable options confirmed by Irish Water in no particular order of priority, are desalination, Lough Derg, Lough Derg and storage and the Parteen Basin
Irish Water is inviting submissions on the following: What other national, regional or locally important constraints should Irish Water take into account when locating the infrastructure associated with each water supply option? Have you any comment on the proposed constraints and the approach to their use? Are there any Assessment Criteria other than those proposed which should be used in the next phase of options appraisal? How would you like to be communicated with us as the project progresses?
Further information can be found on the project website at www.watersupplyproject.ie
It is expected that a preferred optio, once agreed and subject to relevant environmental consideration will be submitted to An Bord Pleanála for planning approval in mid-2017.
The Water Supply Options Working Paper is available to view in county libraries and at local authority planning counters within the project study area and www.watersupplyproject.ie