27 May 2022

Calls for more to be done on water contamination after Carlow supply put on watchlist

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Carlow Carlow Carlow

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Following news that Irish Water has issued a warning to farmers about the use of pesticides and Carlow is on a watchlist Cllr Adrienne Wallace has said more needs to be done.

A file was opened in 2019 for Metaldhyde on Carlow Town, which receives its water from the Burrin River & Oak Park borehole.

Irish Water say that the pesticide levels detected in the water supply does not pose any immediate risk to health, but it is imperative that users of pesticides in these areas are mindful of best practice when spraying their lands.

Speaking on this issue, Cllr Wallace said: "It is not enough for Irish Water to simply ‘urge’ users of pesticides to be mindful of best practice.

"Let’s put this in context - we are currently in the middle of a public health crisis and the Government have given sweeping powers to Garda to act to protect health.

"Pesticides in our water supply is another massive health issue, and as such there should be binding regulations to protect people in Carlow’s health. We need to take this a lot more seriously.”

She added: "The work farmers do is essential but we cannot just expect them to be able to make the move to organic farming or to use alternative weed and pest control methods.

"We must offer material support to them by providing the alternatives and educating on how to move away from an over-reliance on pesticides.

"Following this we have to get serious about tackling anyone who is found to be not adhering to best practice. Fly-tipping and dumping rubbish is never acceptable, nor is dumping pesticides in our rivers.

"I will be asking Irish Water to do more. This is not just a human health issue but one that affects all the life in the river."

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