Bathing water quality continues to improve but pollution incidents affect some beaches
The EPA has published the Bathing Water in Ireland report for 2020 which sets out the quality of bathing water at our beaches. Overall, bathing water quality improved across the country in 2020. However, the report highlights that water quality can change quickly in the short term, especially during rainfall events which can wash pollution into our bathing waters.
- Bathing water quality continued to improve in 2020 with 96 per cent of bathing waters (142 of 148) meeting or exceeding the minimum required standard
- 111 bathing waters were classified as excellent for 2020, up from 107 in 2019
- Bathing water quality at four beaches was classified as Poor, compared with five in 2019
- Pollution incidents, especially during heavy rainfall, can impact bathing water quality on a short-term and localised basis
- Swimmers should check the latest bathing water quality information at www.beaches.ie
The continued improvement in bathing water quality is welcome. It is also positive to see two new beaches being identified in 2020, and to see improvements at two beaches that had poor water quality previously. Good quality bathing waters are important now more than ever as more people enjoy our natural amenities, and particularly swimming. With many people now swimming outside the bathing season, the EPA is calling for additional water quality monitoring at beaches where there are large numbers of year-round swimmers, and that this information is made available to the publicEPA Director Dr Eimear Cotter