Minister Josepha Madigan TD has called on Irish Water to provide an update on actions to tackle bathing water quality in Dublin Bay.
A recently created task force including Irish Water, Dublin City Council, and Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council are currently working together to diagnose the root-causes of bathing water quality issues in specific areas of Dublin Bay and put in place programmes to solve these issues. This follows bathing water quality issues raised in recent months by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and swimmers in the bay.
“Dublin Bay is a fantastic natural amenity that is very popular with swimmers from across Dublin and beyond. It is for this reason that we must ensure that the bathing water there is of a high quality and that swimmers and local residents can have confidence in the condition of the water.
“The EPA’s most recent bathing water quality report, which was published this year, highlights the positive progress being made in improving bathing waters around the country. I was particularly satisfied to see the ongoing increase in the amount of bathing areas meeting or exceeding the water quality requirements.
“When it comes to Dublin Bay, the Environmental Protection Agency has classified the water quality as ‘good’ under the water framework directive for the period 2013 to 2018. This is an improvement on the ‘moderate’ status achieved during the 2007 to 2009 period.
“However, work remains to be done, and I believe that the agencies and local authorities involved should provide an update on how this work is progressing. Already, Irish Water is carrying out a major upgrade of the Ringsend wastewater treatment plant. This upgrade will increase the capacity of the plant to cater for the growing population of the Greater Dublin Area. In addition, the taskforce is addressing other issues that may be impacting water quality including sewerage drainage and storm water overflows.
“We want people to continue to have confidence in the water quality and to continue to enjoy swimming in the Bay. Therefore, an update on action to date, and anticipated future actions would be more welcome."