Dublin could run out of water as climate change ‘hits home’, warns minister

Dublin Could Run Out Of Water As Climate Change ‘Hits Home’, Warns Minister
Eamon Ryan said several ministers raised examples of climate change affecting their local areas at Cabinet on Wednesday. Photo: PA
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By Gráinne Ní Aodha, PA

The Government has published its second strategy on how Ireland should adapt to climate change events “hitting home”.

Ministers approved a national adaptation framework on Wednesday, and Minister for the Environment and Transport Eamon Ryan said he would be in touch with ministers who have a role in Ireland’s adaptation to the climate.


Mr Ryan said that at Cabinet on Wednesday ministers raised local examples of the effect climate change was having on Ireland.

“The Taoiseach (Simon Harris) cited we’ve lost the walkway between Bray and Greystones, washed away, and it needs to be restored, it needs to be brought back.



“The Tánaiste (Micheál Martin) and a number of others made the case about what happened to Midleton last year, which was a classic example of climate change hitting home.

“Minister of the local government and housing Darragh O’Brien cited the fact we’ve lost three houses in Portrane and more at risk.”

He said these are some of the examples of the impacts of climate change that Ireland needs to prepare for, as well as trying to reduce Ireland’s emissions, which he said was “not going to be cheap”.


He added: “We are going to have to invest – I think it’s going to cost between two and four billion euro – to bring water from the west to the east because we know the eastern water system, the reliance just on the Liffey in Dublin’s case, is at risk.

“So we’re going to have to invest in alternatives because if we have the same sort of drought conditions we had in 2018, we could run out of water in Dublin. It’s a climate impact.”

“Similarly, taking my own transport portfolio, we know working with Irish Rail, that line south of Greystones, coastal erosion is real, it’s happening.

“We’re going to have to invest the guts of a quarter of a billion just to protect that line from the coastal erosion that’s taking place.”


The minister was speaking as Copernicus, the EU agency that assesses climate systems, announced that May was the 12th consecutive month when global average temperatures reached record highs.

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