Green Party Encourages Fingal Residents to Make Their Voices Heard on Quality of Local Rivers and Waterways

24th March, 2022

Green Party representatives for Fingal have encouraged the public to make their views on the quality of Fingal’s rivers known by making a submission to the Draft River Basin Management Plan (RBMP) public consultation.

The new RBMP will outline how Ireland will protect and improve the water quality of its rivers and will run from 2022-2027. The public consultation, which closes on the 31st of March, is an opportunity for the public to help shape the overall management of Ireland’s water environment. The finalised plan is due to be published in 2022.

Speaking today, Minister Joe O’Brien said:

“I would strongly encourage any Fingal resident who has an interest in the quality of our local rivers and our environment to consider making a submission to this public consultation and sharing their knowledge.

The State’s record in safeguarding the water quality of our rivers has not been good enough to date. Now more than ever we need to ensure that credible accountability and enforcement measures are put in place as part of this plan to safeguard the biodiversity of our river basins and keep our rivers free from pollutants.”

Swords Cllr Ian Carey said:

“The two rivers that flow through Swords are in bad need of attention. Both have issues with agricultural runoff and the Ward is suffering from decades of domestic dumping which is leaking plastic into the river. We need to get real about protecting them. It’s not acceptable that agencies and county councils will shirk responsibility for protecting nature. We need to have clear accountability. We need someone on the hook for cleaning up our rivers before it is too late.”

Howth-Malahide Cllr. David Healy said:

“Residents along the rivers and coast between Kilbarrack and Malahide are concerned by overflows and unplanned discharges from the sewer network, as well as illegal discharges such as that at Doldrum Bay. Fingal County Council has been asking for almost two years now for Irish Water to come clean on these discharges by making available on this pollution available to the public as soon as it happens. This River Basin Management Plan is about ensuring all public and private bodies which have an impact on our water bodies live up to their obligations and I urge all citizens to engage with the consultation on the draft to make it more effective.”

Minister O’Brien concluded:

“I have engaged previously with residents in the Naul, Swords, Malahide, and many other parts of Fingal who are concerned about the protections in place for our rivers and tried to bring more focus and resources to bear on these issues. This plan is an opportunity for us all to influence how the state cares for our rivers in this crucial decade.”

The Public Consultation on the draft RBMP is accessible at: https://www.gov.ie/en/consultation/2bda0-public-consultation-on-the-draft-river-basin-management-plan-for-ireland-2022-2027/