Decision on whether to lift hosepipe ban due next week

Following recent heavy rainfall and improving river and ground water conditions Irish Water has said it is reviewing the need for the hosepipe ban.

The National Water Conservation Order was put in place on June 9 and was expected to remain in place until July 21. It was issued in a bid to safeguard water supplies for essential purposes, in particular water needed for sanitation purposes during the COVID-19 crisis.

Met √Čireann confirmed that May 2020 was the driest since 1850 and continued dry weather was forecast. When the Water Conservation Order was issued 27 of Irish Water's 900 drinking water schemes, were in drought with another 50 at risk of going into drought. Thereafter the situation deteriorated rapidly with the number of schemes in drought or at risk of drought peaking at 98.

Above average rainfall has arrived in many areas of the country over the past couple of weeks, resulting in the recovery of some of the supplies that were in drought or at risk of drought. Currently only 22 schemes remain in drought and whereas a further 63 are at risk, the overall numbers are trending downwards, however the situation is not uniform across the country.

Fragile

Irish Water said it is continuing to monitor these water sources as their recovery is fragile and subject to change. Early next week Irish Water will again meet with Met Eireann, the OPW, the EPA and other key stakeholders to discuss the impact of the recent rainfall with consideration to lifting or partially lifting the Water Conservation Order.

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