Catchment News

Public Consultation on the draft River Basin Management Plan for Ireland 2022-2027

The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien, TD, has published the draft River Basin Management Plan for Ireland 2022-2027 for public consultation. The Minister now invites submissions, observations and comments on the proposed plan.

A key commitment in the Programme for Government, launching a new strengthened River Basin Management Plan will help Ireland protect, improve and sustainably manage our water environment to 2027. Achieving good water quality in our rivers, lakes, estuaries and seas is essential for protecting Ireland’s drinking water sources, environment and people’s quality of life. The plan is produced in implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD).

Why is there a Public Consultation?

Ireland is currently in the latter stages of preparing the next River Basin Management Plan (RBMP) for Ireland. The Plan is required under the Water Framework Directive for the period 2022-2027.

These plans, amongst other requirements, set out the environmental improvements to be delivered during a river basin planning cycle. The plans contain water quality objectives and a programme of measures to achieve those objectives.

Building on earlier consultation phases, the purpose of this consultation is to gather your views on what should be in the final plan. We need all sectors to respond, to ensure the third-cycle plan is as good as possible.

By responding, you will be helping to shape the overall management of Ireland’s water environment. The information gathered will help us prepare for the next cycle of River Basin Management Plans. The finalised plan is due to be published in 2022.

How you can get involved?

When replying to this consultation, it would assist us if you could respond by completing a short online survey . This will allow you to make your comments more effectively, while helping us to gather and summarise responses quickly and accurately.

Please note: The survey will not operate correctly using Internet Explorer. To participate in the survey you should access the link using a different browser.

However, if you would like to respond in another way, a consultation response template can be downloaded from the link in the documents section of the web page linked below. Completed templates should be emailed to

Alternatively, you can provide a response in your preferred format by post to:

RBMP Consultation, Water Advisory Unit, Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Custom House, Dublin 1 D01 W6X0

Or by email to:

You do not have to respond to every question in the consultation. If you have a specific area of interest, you are free to respond just on that topic.

The consultation period closes on Thursday, 31 March 2022.

Receipt of submissions will be acknowledged but it will not be possible to issue individual responses.

Learn more: – Public Consultation on the draft River Basin Management Plan for Ireland 2022-2027 (

Who is involved?

Quite simply, everyone in Ireland has a role to play. This can be from something as simple as making sure you don’t pollute your local stream, or a local community working together to establish a Rivers Trust to enhance the rivers and lakes in their area, to a Government Department or Agency helping a Minister implement a new policy to help protect and enhance all our water bodies.

This website has been developed and is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is a collaboration between the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Local Authority Waters Programme.


Local Authority Waters Programme

The Local Authority Waters Programme coordinates the efforts of local authorities and other public bodies in the implementation of the River Basin Management Plan, and supports local community and stakeholder involvement in managing our natural waters, for everyone’s benefit.


Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,842 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives for each.


Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

The Department is responsible for making sure that the right policies, regulations and resources are in place to implement the Water Framework Directive, and developing a River Basin Management Plan and Programme of Measures to protect and restore our waters.