North Tipperary County Council is to follow the lead of Limerick and Clare in opposing plans by Dublin City Council to extract 300 million litres of water a day from near Terryglass and pipe it to at least 10 local authorities.
The plan would involve Bord na Mona building a reservoir outside Portarlington. However, no planning application has yet been made to An Bord Pleanala.
At a meeting in Dromineer last Thursday, which was addressed by councillors from Limerick City Council, Limerick County Council and Clare County Council, it was decided to table a motion against the plan with North Tipp.
The motion was subsequently delivered to the council on Friday morning by Cllr Seamus Morris, who said there were “huge vested interests against us”.
Gerry Siney, chair of the River Shannon Protection Alliance, told the meeting that the issue was “slowly becoming an East / West divide” and there were “vested interests” in Dublin “hell bent on getting their hands on Shannon water”.
Charles Stanley Smith, former national president of An Taisce, outlined his organisation’s concerns, but said they would not do anything until planning was sought. He said the way to defeat the plan was through technical arguments, a point agreed by Cllr John Carroll.
Cllr Phyll Bugler said it was in all their interests to fight the plan, while Cllr Virginia O’Dowd, who proposed the motion be put before the council, maintained she had no trust in Dublin City Council.
However, Mayor Ger Darcy warned against tabling a motion that could “come back and bite us in the backside”.
Cllr Michael O’Meara was concerned that Dublin had untold resources to fight opposition to thet plan.