The mandatory registration of domestic waste water treatment systems, including septic tanks, has commenced and homes in Kilkenny must register with Kilkenny County Council.
A registration fee of €5 will apply for those who register by September 28, increasing to €50 from those who register after that date. Registration will need to be renewed every five years, at no cost.
Registration can be done online at www.protectourwater.ie.
Payments can also be made by cash, cheque, money order or debit/credit cards at County Hall on John Street, Kilkenny and in the Castlecomer, Callan, Newrath and Thomastown area offices.
Application forms can also be collected at the local authority offices, in public libraries and Citizens Information Centres and sent by post with the registration fee to Protect our Water, PO Box 12204, Dublin 7. (Cash should NOT be sent by post.)
The council has also noted some of the signs that a septic tank may not be operating correctly: if there are foul odours around the system or the percolation area; if there is an excessive amount of vegetation growing in the percolation area; if the area around the system or percolation area is soggy; or if drains or toilets are running slowly or overflowing.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will determine the level of inspections that will be required, the council pointed out, and residents will be formally notified by their local authority if their domestic waste water treatment system is to be inspected.
Inspectors will be required to carry identification, so residents should take care not to allow uninvited people, or people claiming to be inspectors, to enter onto their property in advance of the launch of inspections, the council said.