October 4, 2022

No harmful levels of pesticides detected in Kilkenny’s drinking water supplies

KILKENNY’S drinking water does not contain excessive levels of pesticides that could pose a threat to our health, Irish Water has confirmed.

The State Utility said it did not detect any “exceedances” in pesticides in drinking water source throughout Kilkenny city and county last year.

However Irish Water, working in partnership with the National Pesticide and Drinking Water Action Group (NPDWAG), warned landowners who use pesticides to continue to be “mindful of best practice” when spraying their lands to protect drinking water quality.

Irish Water’s Regional Drinking Water Compliance Specialist Pat Duggan said: “Irish Water is continuing its extensive investment programme to improve water and wastewater services in Ireland.

“There were exceedances in Kilkenny city at the Troyswood in 2017 where four exceedances for MCPA were highlighted. There have been none since. Providing safe, clean drinking water for all is our first priority. In Ireland, the majority (82%) of drinking water supplies come from surface water sources (water from rivers, lakes and streams). Such supplies are vulnerable to contamination from land and animal run-off.”

Dr Aidan Moody, Chair of the NPDWAG added: “The continued engagement of all stakeholders, working in partnership, is needed to tackle this issue. Users of pesticides should make sure that they are aware of the best practice measures that should be followed to protect water quality.”

Basic steps to reduce pesticide risks:

*Choose the right pesticide product (Note that products containing MCPA are NOT approved for use in weed-wipers);
*Read and follow the product label;
*Determine the right amount to purchase and use;
*Don’t spray if rain or strong wind is forecast in the next 48 hours;
*Make sure you are aware of the location of all nearby water courses;
*Comply with any buffer zone specified on the product label to protect the aquatic environment. Mark out the specified buffer zone from the edge of the river or lake or other water course;
*Never fill a sprayer directly from a water course or carry out mixing, loading or other handling operations beside a water course;
*Avoid spills, stay well back from open drains and rinse empty containers 3 times into the sprayer;
*Store and dispose of pesticides and their containers properly.

A recently produced video on the correct use of MCPA can be viewed on Irish Water’s YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/xQqtZ7jifUs

Information leaflets on pesticide use are also available to download from the Teagasc website at www.teagasc.ie/crops/crops/fodder-crops/


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