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Irish Water attitude to lead pipes ‘disgraceful’ – Stanley

7 August, 2015 - by Brian Stanley TD

Sinn Féin TD and Environment Spokesperson Brian Stanley has branded Irish Water’s attitude to lead piping in the water system as “disgraceful”. He was speaking after the company sent letters to 26,000 households saying that they would not be removing lead pipes until householders took action first.

He went on to criticise the amount of money wasted on the introduction of water charges with a complete lack of proactive measures being taken by Irish Water.

Deputy Stanley said:

“Once again, we are faced with the sheer apathy in which Irish Water hold the presence of lead pipes in the network. It is disgraceful how little concern they have for the presence of lead in the water supply. The government are only now coming to grips with the crisis with promises of a grant system for removal in the next budget. The government and Irish Water have both floundered since the introduction of water charges.

“The Water Framework Directive on which Irish Water and water charges are based is concerned primarily with the removal of contamination of the water supply. The removal of lead piping should be the first objective of Irish Water, not spending €86 million on consultants who told them to spend a further €22 million on sending out bills that a majority of Irish people have rejected.

“It is clear once more that Irish Water is not fit for purpose. They have admitted it will take ten years to deal with the problem of lead pipes and will not act proactively to remove lead. Sinn Féin would question the ability of Irish Water to complete the task at even this lengthy timeframe. The company must be scrapped and a public body that is committed to providing clean, fresh water set up. We don’t need domestic water charges, we need safe drinking water.” 

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