|Will Dublin and the Eastern & Midlands Region get the new water source that is so badly needed? We've now reached a critical point in the bid to provide the region with a new water source - The Water Supply Project - which would provide security of supply for generations to come. Without the Water Supply Project, the threat of water shortages will become a daily threat for businesses and residents in Dublin.|
The Government is currently deciding whether to proceed with the Water Abstraction Bill, which is essential for the Water Supply Project to proceed.
Dublin Chamber has made a submission in support of the Water Abstraction Bill. Any delay at this stage could see the project stall.
We are now calling on members to write to their local representatives to encourage them to back the bill.
If you would like to help, we have drafted a suggested letter that you may wish to adapt and send to your local TDs.
Full details about your local TDs, including contact details is available here.
We appreciate your help on this as we seek to ensure that Dublin's water supply is secured for decades to come.
Dublin Chamber's Policy Team
Dear Deputy XXXXXX,
As a member of the business community I wish to express my support for the Water Supply Project and use this letter to call on you to help secure the successful passage of the General Scheme of the Water Environment (Abstractions) Bill 2018.
The Eastern and Midlands regions are in drastic need of a new and sustainable water supply. The Water Supply Project has been earmarked as the solution best-suited to meeting the future needs of businesses and residents in our growing region. For the Water Supply Project to happen, it is vital that the General Scheme of the Water Environment (Abstractions) Bill 2018 proceeds without delay.
Dublin Chamber of Commerce, the representative organisation for more than 1,300 businesses across the Greater Dublin Area, of which I am a member, has similarly made their position in support of the project abundantly clear.
The Dublin region has reached its water capacity. The city consumes 570 million litres a day, the city’s capacity is just 640 million litres, and we leak 37% of our water supply into the ground. By 2026 Irish Water forecast that an additional 141 million litres of water will be required every day to meet demand. While current efforts to fix the leaks are positive, it will not solve the overall issue of supply. We need a permanent and sustainable solution to this problem.
The Water Supply Project has the power to provide this in its plans to develop the first new source of water to the Eastern and Midlands area in 60 years. The proposed plan to extract water from the Parteen Basin in the lower Shannon provides the only real answer. Irish Water have approved this plan, following four comprehensive consultation periods. It is now time for policymakers to commit to this plan and ensure that the essential water needs of the nation’s capital and Eastern and Midlands region are provided for. An expanding population and growing economy will rely on its successful, timely delivery.
The General Scheme of the Water Environment (Abstractions) Bill 2018 is essential for the implementation of the Water Supply Project and needs to make its way through the Oireachtas this Autumn. Without it the only real solution to the water supply issue for the region will be made impossible.
Weather events over the past 12 months, including the summer drought, should serve as a warning of the precariousness of our position in relation to water.
The National Planning Framework shows a projected population growth of 25% out to 2040 for the Dublin region, the Water Supply Project has the necessary approach to provide for this as it plans for the future in relation to the current and projected population in the region. It plans for economic growth, Dublin’s competitiveness versus other city-regions, and for growth in domestic and non-domestic demand.
In contrast, the consequences of inaction would be disastrous as we are at the point of risk should the country experience a drought or another severe weather event. Non-delivery of a new water supply for the Eastern and Midlands Region would be a disaster for residents and businesses alike. The impact on Dublin’s growth and competitiveness would be significant, and water shortages would damage Ireland’s reputation internationally and hamper its ability to attract FDI.
We need to fix our urgent water supply issue by implementing the Water Supply Project immediately, it is not an issue that we can afford to again push down the line.
I urge that you support the Water Supply Project and back the Water Abstraction Bill to ensure a sustainable water supply is secured for the Eastern and Midlands region.