Monday, 31st July 2017
Water shortage shows need for continued investment says Minister McEntee
“The water shortage last week in the East Meath/Drogheda area again
shows the need for continued investment and joined up thinking in our
water provision locally, regionally and nationally. As a local T.D.
and as a Minister in Government I have, and will continue to press
Irish Water and my colleague Minister Eoghan Murphy to ensure we learn
the lessons and take the steps and make the investment needed to
prevent this happening again” Minister for European Affairs and local
T.D. Helen McEntee has stated.
Planned and future investment
“Following last week’s Irish Water are now rightly focusing on the
pipe at the centre of the crisis. A preliminary view suggests a
timeframe of 18 months and a budget of €2-3m will be needed to
complete the work. As a local T.D. and Minister I will be lobbying to
ensure this funding will be granted and that the time frame can be
expeditated as quickly as possible. In addition, the Staleen Water
Treatment Plant is already scheduled to receive a significant upgrade
of the water treatment plant and pumping station in the coming months.
Minister Murphy had already approved €24.1 million of funding for this
before last week’s events” Minister McEntee stated.
Cannot be allowed happen again
“The loss of water for such a long period and the resulting distress,
interruption to businesses and crucial public services, cannot be
allowed happen again. The interruption to service is also of grave
concern when we are investing alot of effort in marketing Meath and
the North East as an area for inward and local investment. These are
issues that i have stressed in my interactions with Irish Water and
Minister Murphy, and I will continue to do so” Minister McEntee said.
Minister McEntee highlighted lessons must be learned: “I have urged
Irish Water to look back on all aspects of this incident in the coming
days in order to determine what lessons they can learn and what other
measures they can put in place now to deal with a similar event in the
future, in partnership with Local and National Government.”
Back up plans and community spirit
”I urge Irish Water to improve their communications with the general
public, epsecially during times of crisis. Back up plans and
reducancy systems in Meath and the North East should be examined to
ensure there are no further interruptions to supply as we await new
Capital Investment. I was really impressed but not surprised by the
strong community spirit of the people of East Meath and Drogheda in
handling this shortage, especially in looking out for their older and
more vulnerable neighbours. This was one of the real positives we can
take from the crisis” Minister McEntee stated.