A local councillor is raising concern over the state of Kilkenny’s rivers and lakes.
A Water Framework Directive from the EU classifies water bodies as ‘High’, ‘good’, ‘moderate’ ‘poor’ or ‘bad’.
However, the EPA has found that only 40% in Kilkenny achieved even a ‘good’ status, while the rest failed to meet standards.
Cllr Maria Dollard says it’s not a danger to human health, but it’s still a very serious issue, telling KCLR News “It’s really a directive that looks at the overall status of our water bodies so we’re talking about rivers and streams in this particular incidence so it’s not that it poses a threat to human health because obviously our water is treated before it comes to our taps but what it is about is it’s about our environment and it’s about looking after the over ecological environment around our rivers and streams as well as the water that’s flowing through it so it’s really about protecting and sustaining those rivers and streams”.
She adds that the county is performing poorly from a national perspective, saying “We didn’t have any water body that was at the highest standard and really we’re performing poorly compared to nationally because nationally 50% of our water bodies achieve that good standard and the aim is to achieve good or higher so we’re a little bit worse in Kilkenny so we really have to focus on it and work with all the stakeholders to restore that quality that we had a very short time ago so it’s rapidly gone down and that’s the worrying part about it”.
Cllr Dollard is urging all locals to help improve local biodiversity, noting “All stakeholders need to work together to ensure that we restore our water bodies to the health that they had a single generation ago, we all want to be able to safely enjoy the amenities that the river offers and the biodiversity that they support and I’d really urge people to engage with groups like the Nore Vision or the Tidy Towns groups around the county and representative groups like the IFA to find out what you can do to be part of the protection and the restoration of our beautiful rivers and streams, I think it’s good for business, it’s good for agriculture and it’s good for us all in general”.