Cllrs John Brennan and Maurice Shortall inspect the work
Irish Water, in conjunction with Kilkenny County Council, has been carrying out specialised cleaning of the water distribution network in the Castlecomer area to address long-standing issues with manganese build-up in the pipes.
The specialised cleaning of the water network known as ice-pigging involves pumping an ice solution into the pipeline under pressure to remove any built-up sediments and deposits. It's an effective way to remove manganese deposits and will lead to a much clearer water supply for customers in the area.
To minimise the occurrence of manganese in the water, Irish Water have taken a three pronged approach to improve the situation for customers:
Cleaning of water storage reservoirs;
Improvements to the water treatment processes;
Cleaning of the trunk mains on the water supply network;
The work has been carried out on behalf of Irish Water by Glan Uisce Environmental Solutions Ltd (GUESL) in the Moyhora, Clogh, Moneenroe areas of Castlecomer with most of the works undertaken at night to minimise disruption to customers along the network.
The ice pigging team at Castlecomer
Local councillors Maurice Shortall and John Brennan were on site during the works, and have welcomed the investment and the works.
“These have been frustrating times in the north-east Kilkenny area with intermittent discolouring occurring despite the best efforts of our local caretaker who has had to contend with low levels in the reservoirs and an outdated treatment plant at Loon, Castlecomer," said Cllr Shortall, who thanked Irish Water, SUEZ and Glan Uisce Environmental Solutions Ltd.
Irish Water says it is continuing to examine solutions to address the manganese issue in the longer term, including the option of identifying a new source of raw water. However this is a long-term investment requiring significant forward planning, design and lead-in time.
It is hoped that the actions outlined above will help to reduce the discolouration issue in the interim.
"We would like to thank our customers and elected representatives in Clogh and Castlecomer for their patience, engagement and support while we work to address this issue," said a statement from Irish Water.
Customers with queries or concerns should contact Irish Water at 1850-278278. Frequently Asked Questions and Answers in relation to water quality can also be found here.