Water Conservation/ Water Demand Management
Lifestyle choices and population growth continue to place increasing pressure on water supplies. The problems created by these increased demands are compounded by the difficulty in finding new water sources that meet ever increasing quality standards. Kerry County Council have taken steps to ensure efficiency in the usage of existing sources by undertaking the following projects
• Water Conservation Project
• Metering Project
Water Conservation Project
Water Conservation continues to be a focus for pro-active management, with emphasis on leakage control and elimination of waste. Water is a finite natural resource that costs money to produce and must be used in an efficient manner. Leakage control and elimination of waste on the public supply pipe network contains the loss of water and leads to cost efficiencies in terms of savings on water treatment and electricity costs. Water Conservation, also, protects the Capital Investment that has occurred in Water Services.
The Water Conservation Project was initiated in 2005 with € 2.8m funding approved by the DoEHLG. The initial objective was to establish efficient proactive water management procedures. Currently, specialised leak detection and leak repair teams are actively working on the ground.
The project also endeavours to reduce leakage and wastage by managing mains pressure, by reducing domestic customer demand and by establishing procedures which will lead to a sustained drop in water demand. This work is ongoing.
The Government’s Water Pricing Policy Framework requires that all non-domestic consumers be metered with effect from 2007. A project team was established to manage and deliver the metering project in Kerry.
Automatic meter reading technology has been introduced throughout the County as part of this project. This has led to improvements in meter reading efficiency, and levels of data capture.
It is anticipated that the installation of meters will lead to a reduction in water usage and wastage and will help the countywide water conservation project referred to previously. It is also envisaged that this initiative will help, in some measure, to satisfy supply demands where currently shortages are experienced at critical times and will facilitate the addition of new customers.