Saturday 3 December 2016

Paul Melia: Piecemeal solutions will not address our long-term flooding crisis

Published 06/01/2016 | 02:30

The meeting of the National Emergency Co Ordination Group in Agriculture House yesterday. Photo: Frank McGrath
The meeting of the National Emergency Co Ordination Group in Agriculture House yesterday. Photo: Frank McGrath

After the wettest December on record, more than 30 days of crisis meetings, deployment of thousands of local authority staff across the country and families facing the loss of their homes, the best the Government can come up with is a 'coordination' group for the River Shannon.

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Nothing suggests you're out of ideas like a coordination group or, better yet, a taskforce. What makes this measure even more ridiculous is that the Office of Public Works (OPW) - the State agency responsible for flood protection - has been given two weeks to suggest what this coordination group should do, and what powers it should have.

It's not like the Government doesn't know the solution. The OPW has completed in-depth analyses of every river catchment in the country, the Shannon included, and has identified 66 flooding blackspots on our longest river.

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