Meeting with Ministers to share water conservation policy recommendations

A delegation from the National Water Forum met Minister Darragh O’Brien and Minister Malcolm Noonan to highlight the need for a national strategy for water conservation.

The commitment to building 33,000 homes every year for the next 10 years provides a golden opportunity to create water use efficiencies. Putting water efficient standards on all new homes will:

  • reduce carbon emissions associated with providing clean drinking water
  • help adapt to the impacts of drought caused by climate change
  • reduce pressure on the natural environment through reduced abstractions
  • reduce water supply investment costs and improve supply resilience.

The population is set to rise by up to 40% by 2050 yet Uisce Éireann state that 58% of water supply zones have a supply risk at current demand. By the first week of June 2023, there were 7 counties requiring local water conservation measures (e.g. night-time restrictions and water tankering to reservoirs) due to increased water demand and extended periods of warm, dry weather. Making new homes water efficient could reduce domestic water demand by 25% per person per day and thus reduce pressure on supplies and potentially provide considerable water investment savings.

To achieve such an outcome, the Water Forum asked the Ministers to commit to developing a national strategy for water conservation that includes a programme of actions to implement water saving measures.

The Ministers welcomed the suggestion and further technical meetings are planned for September.

Water Forum Policy Position on Water Conservation

Water-Forum-Domestic-Water-Conservation-Policy-Brief-Final.pdf (

Forum members and staff pictured with the Ministers are:

Donal Purcell, Triona Mc Grath, Matt Crowe, Dr Sarah Cotterill (UCD) and Keith Hyland.

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