Cavan-Monaghan Fianna Fáil TD Brendan Smith has called on the Environment Minister Phil Hogan to commit to introducing grants for domestic rainwater harvesting ahead of the introduction of water charges.
Deputy Smith said a scheme, similar to the retrofit grants introduced by the previous government, must be provided to support households in investing in water conservation systems. He commented: “Ireland has a plentiful supply of rainwater and we are not doing enough to exploit this. At the moment people are using expensive drinking water to wash their cars, water their plants and flush their toilets. By harvesting rainwater instead, they would be conserving drinking water and radically reduce their household water bills into the future.”
He continued: “With Minister Hogan making plans to slap water charges on every household in the country from 2014, he must look at innovative ways of using our natural resources to help minimise the cost on households.” Mr Smith said that this must include a grant scheme to help households, schools and businesses in the area and across the country to install rainwater harvesting systems. He concluded: “It would allow people to use rain water for much their daily needs, thereby radically reducing future water bills and helping to conserve expensive treated tap water nationally.”