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Major wastewater treatment plant gets go ahead in north Dublin despite local opposition

Opponents to the plant have said they are ready to initiate a judicial review in the High Court.

Irish Water said the treated water will be
Irish Water said the treated water will be "safely returned" to the Irish Sea through a 6km marine pipeline from Baldoyle to a point 1km north-east of Ireland's Eye

A MAJOR WASTEWATER treatment plant in north Dublin has been given the go ahead by An Bord Pleanála, despite significant opposition from locals. 

Irish Water has said the plant, due to be located on a 29.8-hectare site in Clonshaugh, will facilitate “sustainable growth” of new homes and businesses in the area.

The plans will see an underground pipeline beginning at Blanchardstown that will collect and transfer wastewater, via a new pumping station at Abbotstown, to the facility in Clonshaugh.  

Irish Water said the treated water will be “safely returned” to the Irish Sea through a 6km marine pipeline from Baldoyle to a point 1km north-east of Ireland’s Eye.  

The project also includes development of facilities that Irish Water said will “ensure the effective running of the new wastewater treatment plant”.

These will include a regional sludge treatment centre at the site and an associated biosolids storage facility at Newtown near Kilshane Cross.

Irish Water now plans to progress with a detailed design and contractor procurement process. When this is complete, the construction stage is expected to take three years.

GDD Project Solution Map 2018 A map of the proposed project Source: Irish Water

Opposition

Opponents to the plant have said they are ready to initiate a judicial review in the High Court. 

“We accept that the sewage network is under pressure and we are willing to help Irish Water find another solution, but this isn’t it,” local campaigner Sabrina Joyce-Kemper said. 

“We aren’t just being Nimby (not in my back yard) about this. It’s not just our back yard. This is the Irish Sea we are talking about, it’s everyone’s back yard,” Joyce-Kemper said. 

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Another opponent, Philip Swan, has argued that the Dublin coast is already under huge stress and that campaigners “utterly reject this decision”.

In its decision, An Board Pleanála (ABP) said the proposed development will “assist Ireland in meeting obligations set down under EU Directives, national legislation and planning policy which regulate development at a national, regional and local level”. 

“The Greater Dublin Drainage Project components would enable sustainable residential and economic growth through the delivery of increased wastewater capacity while protecting the environment,” ABP said.

It is intended that the new wastewater treatment facility and associated infrastructure will become operational from 2026. 

Irish Water expects the facility to have the capacity to provide wastewater treatment for the equivalent of half a million people living and working in the area in the future. 

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