Tuesday, 16 October 2007
Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government
Water and Sewerage Schemes
Question 559: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the constraints on development that exist in many parts of County Kildare arising from the lack of waste water treatment capacity and that proposed works at Osberstown and Leixlip are urgently required but will not, when completed, meet the growing demand in the county; if a solution to Kildare's waste water treatment problems will be brought forward in the context of the greater Dublin strategic drainage study; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23345/07]
A comprehensive range of new water services infrastructure, estimated to cost in excess of €207m, has been approved for County Kildare in my Department's Water Services Investment Programme 2007-2009 published in September 2007. The Programme, which includes details of each scheme for which funding is being provided, is available in the Oireachtas Library. The schemes included are derived from the proposals identified by the elected members in the assessment of needs produced by Kildare County Council in response to my Department's request to all local authorities in 2006 to review and prioritise their proposals for new capital works in their areas.
The Upper and Lower Liffey Valley Sewerage Schemes, in addition to expanding the Osberstown and Leixlip Wastewater Treatment Plants, will upgrade and improve wastewater services in many other towns in Kildare. In January 2007, my Department approved Kildare County Council's contract documents for sewer network upgrading in Celbridge, Kilcock, Leixlip and Maynooth under the Lower Liffey Valley Scheme. Related works in Straffan were completed last year. My Department has also authorised the Council to prepare contract documents for the expansion of the Leixlip wastewater treatment plant.
In December 2006, my Department gave approval to Kildare County Council to prepare contract documents for the expansion of the Osberstown plant under the Upper Liffey Valley Scheme. In August 2007, I gave approval for the preparation of contract documents for the upgrading of the collection networks in Clane, Johnstown, Kilcullen, Kill, Naas, Newbridge, Prosperous and Sallins as part of the same scheme.
Among the recommendations of the Greater Dublin Strategic Drainage Study is that wastewater flows from the west and north-west of the Greater Dublin Area (including parts of Kildare) would be connected to a new orbital sewer and transferred to a new wastewater treatment plant at Portrane in Fingal. As part of a Strategic Environmental Assessment of the Study recommendations, an Environmental Report recently published by Fingal County Council is open for public comment until the end of November. Following completion of the public consultation phase, the Strategic Environmental Assessment will be finalised and published.