12th December 2011: The Greater Dublin Drainage Project Team has received over 10,000 submissions from members of the public and other stakeholders, since October 10th, when the identification of nine land parcels in north Dublin, within which the new regional wastewater treatment plant could potentially be located, marked the start of the second round of non statutory public consultation on the project. 

 Speaking to the Elected Members of Fingal County Council today, Peter O’Reilly, Project Engineer, said the Project Team welcome the significant interest in the project and he thanked people for making the Project Team aware of issues and constraints that need to be considered, before the Project Team make a decision on the most suitable location for the new waste infrastructure. 

  “The high level of engagement from local people and stakeholders this early in the project’s development is an endorsement of the early and detailed public consultation we have undertaken since the start of this project”, said Peter O Reilly. “All the issues contained in the submissions we have received will be examined by experts and considered by the Project Team”, he confirmed, “before a shortlist of potential sites is identified next year.  Among the issues raised are : risk of odours, risks to agri- and horticulture, fishing and shellfish, ecology concerns, impact on local communities, traffic and access, over-burdening of communities, ecology, pollution, heritage, distance from load centres and cost.”

 The majority of Fingal’s wastewater is currently treated at Ringsend WWTP.  A new regional wastewater treatment works will be needed by 2020, to meet Dublin’s current and future economic, industrial and residential demands, as well as to protect the environment and meet the EU Water Framework Directive standards, avoiding huge financial fines and penalties.

 The cost of the project will be known when locations for all three elements – the wastewater treatment works, the marine outfall and the orbital sewer – are identified. The estimated costs are likely to be less than €500million.  Approximately 16 hectares of land will be required for the treatment works, with an additional 4 hectares of a buffer or screening zone. One large plant will have less impact on the environment than a number of smaller plants.  Local rivers and streams are already at capacity and are too small to absorb treated water from a number of smaller plants.   

  “The new regional plant is needed as an add-on to the existing regional wastewater treatment works in Dublin at Ringsend, currently being extended to its maximum extent”, Peter O’Reilly said.  “It will be two thirds smaller than Ringsend and capable of treating up to 700,000 Population Equivalent at full capacity by 2040, starting with treating 350,000 Population Equivalent in 2020.  Most of the waste to be treated at the new regional plant will come from Fingal.  “Population Equivalent” includes wastewater from industries, hospitals, offices etc as well as homes. “

The Greater Dublin Drainage project includes a marine outfall and a new orbital drainage system, linking into the existing drainage system which brings wastewater from Final to Ringsend wastewater treatment works for treatment. 

 In the last five years the population of Fingal increased by 13.8%, almost double the national growth rate (from 239,992 to 273,051).


For further information : Mary Murphy 087 233 6415 or Fingal Co Council Press Office: 01 890 5998