Protecting Lough Guittane Water Supply

The Lough Guittane Water Scheme provides drinking water to large parts of Kerry including the main population centres of Killarney, Tralee & Castleisland. It serves about 56,000 people and is estimated to serve 80% of the visiting tourists in Kerry. In 2007 a report by the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) made several recommendations, including an urgent review of monitoring for Cryptosporidium, a suitable barrier protection system, source protection measures for the lake & the control of cattle & other animals.

In 2013 the EPA has included Lough Guittane in its remedial list under the heading “Inadequate treatment for Cryptosporidium”.  The proposed action is to upgrade the plant to include an effective barrier for Cryptosporidium. The EPA has set a target completion date of Dec 2016.

This is a totally unacceptable timescale for an issue that has been highlighted since 2007. I call on the EPA & Irish Water to expedite the completion date as it’s a critical health issue considering the population that the scheme serves.

I have raised the issues regarding Lough Guittane and numerous occasions while on Killarney Town Council, I will continue to raise them on Kerry County Council.

An outbreak of cryptosporidium, as happened in Galway in 2007, would have disastrous consequences for Killarney, Tralee, Castleisland and for tourism in the County, OUR WATER SUPPLY NEEDS TO BE PROTECTED.

Motions November 2012  Cllr Donal Grady “That we Killarney Town Council would write to the appropriate authorities requesting that Loughguittane Lake, which is the public water supply for Killarney and other parts of Kerry, is brought up to EPA and European Standards before any water charges are brought into Killarney.”

Motions June 2008  Cllr Donal Grady “That we Killarney Town Council see an immediate update from Kerry County Council and the Department of the Environment regarding our water quality in Loughguittane, and more importantly the protection of Loughguittane Lake from animals such as cattle & sheep. Is the quality in keeping with EPA standards?. Can we also the request the relevant authorties to remove fluoride from our water.”

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