IRELAND HEADING FOR DROUGHT CONDITIONS WITH WATER SUPPLY ON A KNIFE EDGE
Irelands water supply is on a knife edge due to the lack of rainfall over the last 2 weeks in parts of Ireland and with high temperatures this week of up to 30C very little rainfall is shown in the forecast over the next 7 days which is a concern. The chart below is from the GFS weather model which shows the amounts of rainfall which is expected to fall between today Thursday the 28th of June 2018 and Friday the 6th of July 2018.
The General Manager of Irish Water has said the utility is "operating on a knife edge" as water schemes are under increased pressure during the current hot spell.
With temperatures in the 30s this threatening drought conditions in many parts of the country, and an extension of water restrictions.
Eamon Gallen said conservation messages are having an impact and urged consumers to continue to conserve water usage.
Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, he said that around 10,000 customers are affected by water restrictions, with around 7,000 of them in Kilkenny.
He added that Donegal, Galway, Limerick and Mullingar have been identified as areas most at high risk.
Mr Gallen said that supply and demand in many schemes were already under pressure before the hot weather and with water levels in rivers and lakes dropping significantly there is less water to treat and supply.
He said the challenge for Irish Water is that the water network in many areas is not able to cope with extremes in weather.
Mr Gallen said schools have been urged to turn off water, once they close for holidays.
The utility said it is concerned about this level of consumption particularly heading into the weekend and may need to take action.
The company is consulting with local authorities today to decide on a course of action, which could include some sort of restrictions.
Wexford County Council has warned that current water consumption, which is up 20% in the past week, is unsustainable and have called on homeowners and businesses to adopt water conservation measures immediately.
Farmers say they are very worried about the impact any water restrictions could have, especially on dairy farms where up to 120 litres of drinking water per cow is required each day.
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