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“Raw Sewage Unacceptable & Pose Risk To Public Health” – EPA

Repeated delays in the elimination of raw sewage are unacceptable and pose a risk to our environment and public health, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

We are aware that raw sewage and other contaminates are flowing from some areas including the local authority sewage treatment plant in Thurles, directly into the River Suir, both up and downstream. This was confirmed back in late October of this year, by the Director of Services for Water, currently stationed with Tipperary County Council, Mr Marcus O’Connor, who finally admitted that double standards are permitted, when it comes to environmental issues affecting the River Suir here in Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

The Thurles.Info, website have been writing about this issue constantly since 2016, ending up with reporting of the issue, on 16/08/19, to the Office of Environmental Enforcement who have chosen to ignore the issue.

Waste water treatment at 21 of Ireland’s 169 large towns and cities did not meet national and European standards set to protect the environment. This is down from 28 the previous year.

River Suir Thurles

Sewage from the equivalent of 77,000 people in 36 towns and villages is being released into the environment every day without treatment.
The pace of improvements needed to protect our environment and public health is too slow. Raw sewage discharges will continue past 2021 in 13 locations.

The EPA report on Urban Waste Water Treatment in 2018, only released today, shows there have been some improvements in waste water treatment in the past year, including the elimination of discharges of raw sewage from two areas.

However, the pace at which Irish Water is fixing the legacy of deficiencies in Ireland’s waste water treatment infrastructure is too slow, and many areas continue to release inadequately treated waste water into the environment. Raw sewage from 36 towns and villages is still released into our coastal waters and rivers today.

Commenting on the report Dr. Tom Ryan, (Director of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Enforcement) has stated: – “Inadequately treated waste water can pollute our environment and is a risk to people’s health. We are seeing repeated delays in providing treatment for many areas and it is not acceptable that 13 towns and villages will still have no waste water treatment by the end of 2021. Irish Water must speed up its delivery of key infrastructure.”

Mr Andy Fanning, (Programme Manager of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Enforcement) has commented that: – “The underlying problem in many cases is a lack of adequate treatment infrastructure. This is a legacy issue which must be solved by investment in new treatment systems. However, some towns that already have the necessary treatment in place did not perform as well as they should. We require Irish Water to continue to improve how it operates and maintains waste water treatment systems to get the best performance from them”.

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