3,000 in line for grants to improve water
Homeowners will receive grants to upgrade septic tanks in areas where local rivers or lakes are polluted or at risk of failing quality standards.
Some 3,000 homeowners with an on-site wastewater treatment system will be paid to complete repairs or replace their tanks under plans to improve water quality. The Government plans to improve 726 rivers, lakes and other water bodies over the next three years.
The Government's River Basin Management Plan (2018-2021) is being lodged with the European Commission this week, two years late.
It says Irish Water's €1.7bn investment programme, coupled with advice for farmers on preventing pollution and improving quality, more monitoring and the grant scheme will lead to improvements.
Some 242 septic tank grants have been paid since 2014, totalling around €750,000. The plan is to fund 3,000 upgrades in areas identified as high risk.
There is particular concern that high quality waters, or the number of rivers or lakes in near pristine condition, is falling.
Between 2007 and 2009, some 13pc of all rivers had "high" status. It is now 10pc.
Overall, just 57pc of our rivers, 46pc of lakes, 79pc of coastal waters and 91pc of groundwaters comply with EU standards. 75pc of shellfish waters meet the required standard.