Catchment News

Working together to protect and improve our rivers, lakes & coastal waters: upcoming public meetings

The River Basin Management Plan for Ireland 2018 – 2021 (RBMP) sets out a new approach for the protection and management of water quality in our rivers, lakes, estuaries, groundwater, and coastal waters. The Plan is underpinned by a strong evidence base from the work of the EPA, Inland Fisheries Ireland and local authorities in assessing the status of water quality in individual waterbodies. The process of developing this Plan involved extensive input from public bodies working with water and opportunities for public and stakeholder involvement.

The River Basin management Plan 2018-2021 lists 190 Priority Areas for Action that will be focused on up to 2021. These Areas include 726 water bodies, consisting of 616 river water bodies, 89 lakes, 14 estuaries and 7 coastal water bodies. Water quality improvements will deliver multiple benefits for: human health, wildlife, and local economies through tourism and sustainable industry. This approach will require ongoing coordination and collaboration between local authorities, state agencies and stakeholders, together with continued public engagement and participation.

Next steps: public meetings in Priority Areas for Action

The next steps will involve on the ground actions and stream walks by catchment scientists to gain a better understanding of the issues impacting on water quality in the priority areas for action and to develop solutions that are relevant and workable locally.

The Local Authority Waters Programme will host public meetings in these priority areas for action before any field work commences to inform the public and stakeholders of planned activities on local water bodies identified for further assessment. These meetings will commence in October 2018 and continue over the lifespan of the Plan. Meeting details will be advertised in local press, radio and on social media.

Full details of when the meetings are taking place are on the Waters and Communities Office website.

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 waterbodies.

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 and Communities Office.

LAWCO

Local Authority Waters and Communities Office

The Waters and Communities Office has been established to carry out public consultation and engagement, and to coordinate the activities of all 31 local authorities in areas connected with the Water Framework Directive.

EPA

Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4829 waterbodies, looking at trends and changes and determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives and measures for each.

DECLG

Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government

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 that will be implemented after public consultation, and sign off by the Minister.