Irish Water – the claims and counter-claims

The contentious debate on the future of Irish Water has been full of claim and counter-claim.
With the charges on the verge of being suspended for at least nine months and potentially refunded here are some of the facts and figures put out by politicians as the crisis looks set to make or break government talks.


:: 13 U-turns on Irish Water policies by the outgoing Fine Gael-Labour government, according to Fianna Fail’s Barry Cowen.
:: 452km of pipes repaired or replaced since the semi-state was created.
:: 40 locations around the country where raw sewage is being pumped into the sea, rivers or loughs, watchdogs warned.
:: In one area of Cork harbour 20,000 tonnes of sewage is pumped out every day.
:: 34 million litres of water a day – enough to keep Co Wicklow supplied for 24 hours – is now being stopped from being lost through leaks and another 80 million litres of leaks at homes have been identified.
:: The near 90 million euro consultancy spend by Irish Water, including 50 million euro during its set up, Freedom of Information reports have revealed.
:: 20,000 people no longer living under boil water notices since Irish Water was created in 2013.
:: 40% of clean drinking water in Dublin being lost to leaks, according to Independent TD Tommy Broughan.
:: 1 million people – the number of demonstrators who took to the streets in seven major marches against the charges.
:: 100 million euro – the cost of calculating charges, sending bills and chasing payments for water, according to Social Democrat Stephen Donnelly.
:: 2 million payments – the number of refunds that will have to be made if charges are suspended.
:: 40% reduction in water use if a charge is introduced, an internationally accepted conservation rate, according to newly elected TD Michael Harty.