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Katherine Walshe, Southern Regional Operations Manager with Irish Water and Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, Simon Coveney TD at the Shanbally Wastewater Treatment Plant. Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision
Katherine Walshe, Southern Regional Operations Manager with Irish Water and Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, Simon Coveney TD at the Shanbally Wastewater Treatment Plant. Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision
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Major progress made on Cork Lower Harbour Main Drainage Project

HALF of the raw sewage from Carrigaline, Crosshaven and Shanbally that previously flowed into Cork Harbour is now being collected and treated before being safely discharged.

Key progress has been made in the €117 million Cork Lower Harbour Main Drainage Project, with the official announcement yesterday that the Shanbally Wastewater Treatment Plant has commenced operations.

Work has also recently begun on the repair and upgrade of the sewerage network on the south side of Cork Lower Harbour including Carrigaline, Monkstown, Passage West and Ringaskiddy, with work in Cobh expected to start in 2018. 

On completion of the project, all wastewater from Cobh, Passage West, Glenbrook, Monkstown, Carrigaline, Ringaskiddy and Shanbally will be diverted to the new wastewater treatment plant at Shanbally

Speaking at yesterday's launch, Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, Simon Coveney welcomed the progress, stating that the project "will bring huge benefits to communities right across the harbour", by not only protecting the local environment and improving the image of the lower harbour area as a tourist attraction but also by facilitating economic development and providing for a growing population.

"It is shocking that raw sewage has been discharged for so many years directly to the harbour, but we are now addressing this problem with an investment in wastewater infrastructure that will facilitate future growth and development and support tourism across the region," said Minister Coveney.

“I am delighted to see that so much progress has already been made and that the wastewater treatment plant at Shanbally is now operational. This investment by Irish Water highlights the need for a national utility with the expertise and funding to address the deficits in water and wastewater infrastructure throughout the State.” 

Mayor of County Cork Seamus McGrath stated that the opening of the Shanbally plant marks a major milestone in the Cork Lower Harbour Main Drainage Project. 

"Before this project got underway, an average of 44,000 wheelie bins worth of raw sewage were being pumped into the harbour every day," he said. 

"This is now been reduced by half and by the time this project is complete in 2020, it will have been reduced to zero. This is great news for the news for the environment, the people of Cork and the future of the harbour.”