Minister Fergus O'Dowd
The Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government and the Irish Water Programme at Bord Gáis Éireann has announced that every home in the country is to receive an information leaflet on the transformation of water services in Ireland - A guide to the establishment of Irish Water - marking the first phase of a public information campaign.
The bilingual leaflet which will be delivered to every household during the month of February aims to build awareness among the people of Ireland about the need for water reform. It outlines the reasons for creating the new public authority Irish Water and the benefits it will deliver to public water users in Ireland.
Minister of State, Fergus O'Dowd said: "Water reform is a major undertaking and it is important that all citizens are informed on what is happening and how reform will affect them. Water is a valuable resource, and while Ireland has an abundance of water resources, the cost of providing treated drinking water and the collection and treatment of our wastewater is expensive. Additional investment is required in the decade ahead to modernise our distribution networks and continue the process of expanding and upgrading other infrastructure to meet environmental and public health standards, as well as the needs of sectors of the economy that can support employment growth".
He added: "The reform of the sector, including the establishment of Irish Water, provides the means to achieve these goals through a sustainable funding system, facilitating increased investment into the system resulting in better services for us all. I urge everybody to take the time to read this information leaflet and keep it for reference as the establishment of Irish Water is progressed," continued Minister O'Dowd.
John Barry, Irish Water Programme Director said: "It's important that every household has access to relevant information on the establishment of Irish Water and this leaflet aims to do just that.
"The leaflet provides useful information about how the new system will work, how the people of Ireland will benefit, details in relation to the introduction of water charges and water meters and finally the key timelines of the Irish Water programme. We hope that by having this information readily available it will address some of the questions and concerns that people may have in relation to the transformation of water services in Ireland.
"The next key milestone for Irish Water is the start of meter installations in July 2013. Over 1million homes will be metered by 2016. This programme and the related customer support will create over 2,000 jobs."