Dáil debates

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Topical Issue Debate

Flood Prevention Measures

6:15 pm

Photo of Jonathan O'BrienJonathan O'Brien (Cork North Central, Sinn Fein) | Oireachtas source

I want to pick up on the points made by Deputies Harrington and McCarthy, particularly with regard to Bandon and Skibbereen. It is a very long process and perhaps we can look to see whether it can be sped up, but every stage of the process is important in its own right and we should not just drop stages to try to speed up any particular scheme. What we do need to look at, particularly in areas such as Bandon, whose flood relief scheme was unfortunately held up for legal reasons, is what other measures can be taken while there is a significant delay in the implementation of a flood relief scheme. I have no doubt that if we had not had those legal delays in Bandon it would not have been flooded. Nobody can calculate these delays, because everyone has the right to object, but we need to look at factors that could mitigate flooding in areas where we are waiting. For instance, in Blackpool, with which the Minister of State is very familiar, a flood relief scheme is being put in place because the village has been flooded on numerous occasions. Through the Minister of State's office, and in conjunction and in partnership with Cork City Council, we were able to carry out some remedial works which, although the works were minor and it was not a finished flood relief scheme, was enough to prevent the village from flooding again. This is what we need to look at in areas such as Bandon, where we have huge delays, and Skibbereen, where we are hoping the flood relief schemes will be completed within two years, to see what can be done in terms of remedial works in the short term.


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