Oireachtas committee and IFA call for OPW to take Shannon 'lead role'
The IFA and an Oireachtas committee have both called for the Office of Public Works (OPW) to be given charge of maintaining water levels on the Shannon.
In talks with Minister Brian Hayes, who has responsibility for the OPW, an IFA delegation insisted that it was time for the state body to take the lead role in managing the river.
This position was supported in a special report on recent flooding in the Shannon Basin compiled by the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Environment, Culture and the Gaeltacht.
Among the recommendations set out in the report were to:
1.Give the OPW authority to operate as the lead agency in monitoring and managing flood risk on the Shannon;
2.Monitor water flow on the river and remove any blockages, including silt, that may inhibit the river's flow and cause flooding;
3.Implement an immediate review of the statutory and operational water levels on the Shannon. Maintain waters at a level that facilitates all users, including farmers, commercial interests and ecological and environmental groups;
4.Put a flood early warning system in place;