Irish Water faces sentence over environmental breaches in Cork and Kildare

ireland
Irish Water Faces Sentence Over Environmental Breaches In Cork And Kildare
The cases are in connection with sewage problems in Co Kildare and in Co Cork
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Tom Tuite

Irish Water is to be sentenced in September over breaches of environmental regulations in Co Cork and Co Kildare.

It has faced a prosecution by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which has been delayed as a result of the Covid-19 crisis.

The cases, which are before Dublin District Court, are in connection with sewage problems in Co Kildare and in Co Cork. On Friday, Judge Anthony Halpin ordered that the case would be listed for sentence on September 27th next. On that date facts and mitigation pleas will be heard.

It was alleged from March 14th to March 21st, 2019, Irish Water failed to take corrective action or notify the agency as soon as practicable about three incidents of discharge of untreated sewage from Newhall Pumping Station into the River Liffey, with potential for environmental contamination of surface water.

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It is also accused of not informing Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI), the State agency responsible for the protection, management and conservation of Ireland's inland fisheries and sea angling resources.

The water company is also accused of failing to maintain a programme for the maintenance and operation of all plant and equipment used at Newhall Pumping Station to ensure no unauthorised waste water discharges took place.

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It is alleged, in another charge, that there was a failure to tell another treatment plant which operates the downstream Leixlip drinking water abstraction point, about the three incidents of raw sewage discharge.

It is also accused of failing to make a record of the extent or impact of the incidents.

It is alleged the company breached its wastewater discharge licence by excessive ammonia emissions from its water works in Boherbue, Co. Cork, on eight dates between August 2017 and February 2019.

It faces eight similar counts in relation to exceeding emission limit values from orthophosphates from August 2017 until a date in January 2019.

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