Wednesday 18 September 2019

Renovations worth €10m to Dun Laoghaire baths halted following major plastic pollution

Dun Laoghaire Harbour. Photo: Irish Independent
Dun Laoghaire Harbour. Photo: Irish Independent
Conor McCrave

Conor McCrave

Renovations worth €10m to Dun Laoighaire baths, a popular seaside attraction in South Dublin, have been halted by the local council following contamination of the shoreline.

A massive clean-up operation is continuing after millions of ‘needle-like’ plastic shards washed up on the shore following works by a contractor, sparking concern amongst local residents.

A team of 70 individuals, including environmental clean-up specialists, have been deployed to the site by the council and the company involved, SIAC/Montovani.

A statement from Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council today said environmental consultants are now carrying out an investigation on what impact the pollution will have on sea life and wildlife living in the area.

It also said any costs incurred from this incident of plastic pollution would be sought from the company carrying out works to the pier. 

“The Council wish to advise the public that they will recoup any and all public costs associated from SIAC/Mantovani,” it said.

“The Council have stopped all works at the Dún Laoghaire Baths site temporarily.”

It is believed small fibres which were poured onto the sea bed as part of the construction process, weighing approximately 100kg, did not bond with the concrete, instead floating into the ocean as a result.

A spokesperson for SIAC/Mantovani said environmental assessments carried out by the company indicate there has been no impact of the water pollution to the wildlife in the area.

“Divers have also inspected the deeper areas adjacent to shore and rock pools and have found nothing,” they said adding further monitoring would be carried out this week.

The project is currently expected to be completed by spring 2020 following almost two years of development works.

A café, promenade between the baths and the shore, and a new jetty for bathers and swimmers at the Forty Foot site are to be included in the finished product.

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