Uisce √Čireann adopts the Regional Water Resources Plan – North West to safeguard the drinking water supply over the next 25 years

Final plan incorporates feedback received during a 13 week public consultation

EMBARGOED TO 00:01 JULY 26 2023 -Uisce √Čireann has adopted the Regional Water Resources Plan ‚Äď North West (RWRP-NW), which will safeguard public health, support growth and meet the challenges of climate change across the North West region over the next 25 years. 

The National Water Resources Plan (NWRP) is Ireland‚Äôs first 25-year strategic plan enabling us to move towards safe, secure, reliable, and sustainable public water supplies for all of our customers and communities, whilst safeguarding public health and the environment. 

Following on from the adoption of the NWRP Framework Plan and associated reports in 2021, the NWRP was split into 4 separate regional plans and, following a public consultation on the second regional plan, the RWRP-NW has been updated and adopted by Uisce √Čireann along with a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Statement and an Appropriate Assessment Determination.

A consultation report summarising feedback received during the public consultation, along with the RWRP-NW and all associated reports, can be viewed and downloaded at https://www.water.ie/projects/strategic-plans/national-water-resources/rwrp/north-west/. Alternatively, our team can be contacted at nwrp@water.ie or 1840 46 36 76, by those who may request view the RWRP-NW, AA Determination and SEA statement at one of our offices.

Commenting on the RWRP-NW final Framework Plan, M√°ir√©ad Conlon, Water Resources Strategy Lead with Uisce √Čireann said, ‚ÄúSafeguarding Ireland‚Äôs precious water resources is a top priority for Uisce √Čireann. With increasing pressure to meet the current demand for water as a result of population growth, climate change, and our changing environmental regulations, it is essential that we plan ahead. The Regional Water Resources Plan ‚Äď North West  will enable us to do that in a sustainable way, whilst also supporting economic development and population growth across the region.

‚ÄúHow we plan our water resources today will determine the water supply we can provide now and into the future. The Three Pillar approach of ‚ÄėUse Less‚Äô, ‚ÄėLose Less‚Äô and ‚ÄėSupply Smarter‚Äô allows Uisce √Čireann to consider the broadest possible range of solutions through the development of the regional plans. We would like to thank everyone who made a submission to the consultation process. The Regional Water Resource Plan- North West is the third of our regional plans and has now been adopted.‚ÄĚ

There were 39 submissions received in total, including responses from the Office of the Planning Regulator, Ibec, and local authorities in relation to national and regional policy for growth and development.

The public consultation ran from 22 November 2022 to 21 February 2023. Hard copies of the public consultation materials were available for public display in 29 local authority offices and at two county libraries for the duration of the consultation period. Uisce √Čireann also facilitated webinars for interested members of the public and both webinars and in-person briefings for elected representatives.

Phase 2 of the NWRP comprises the development of four Regional Water Resources Plans (RWRPs):

  • Regional Water Resources Plan – Eastern & Midlands
  • Regional Water Resources Plan – North West
  • Regional Water Resources Plan – South West
  • Regional Water Resources Plan – South East

Each regional plan will comprise of both a non-statutory screening and scoping consultation with environmental authorities, followed by a statutory public consultation.

Consultations on the Regional Water Resources Plan Eastern and Midlands and South West are now complete and the plans have been updated and adopted. Consultation on the last regional plan for the South East launched on 11 July and will run until 3 October 2023.