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Tag Archives: Lough Derg

Irish Water accused of ‘double standards’

Irish Water has been accused of engaging in “double standards” by meeting county councillors in private about some issues, while offering to make a presentation about the controversial Lough Derg abstraction project at their July meeting. The charge has been levelled by Councillor Pat Hayes, who has opted to boycott Irish Water’s regular meetings with his colleagues in the Killaloe Muncipal District Area, concerning billing and maintenance issues. Councillor Hayes took the stance after the national water authority refused to send one of its representatives to a full council meeting where issues could be debated in public and reported on by local media. The Fianna Fáil councillor believes IW is engaging in “double standards” by offering to send representatives to the full council meeting because of its desire to press ahead with the contentious water abstraction from Lough Derg. He said local councillors are strongly opposed to IW’s plans to take water from Lough Derg to boost Dublin’s water supplies. …

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Sea eagles cause economy to soar by €500,000

THE East Clare economy soared by an extra €500,000 last year, thanks to the lure of the first successful breeding pair of white-tailed sea eagles in the country in over a century. Clare County Council, which funds the popular White Tailed Sea Eagle Viewing and Information Point at Mountshannon Pier, confirmed the facility generated more than €500,000 for the local economy in 2014. A visitor survey conducted last year found that 43% of people reported the attraction of the sea eagles was the primary factor influencing their decision to visit Mountshannon. More than 10,000 people flocked to the shores of Lough Derg between mid-July and September 2014 to catch a glimpse of the eagles which had nested on Bushy Island, off Mountshannon Bay. A person from Northern Ireland on a sabbatical completed a visitor survey of those attending the viewing and information point. Dr Allan Mee of the Golden Eagle Trust acknowledged that some day trippers visiting Mountshannon last year …

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Taking a trail around Lough Derg

A new trail showcasing the rich natural heritage of Lough Derg will be officially unveiled next week. Lough Derg (on the Shannon) Nature Trail is produced by the county councils in Clare, Galway and Tipperary, and co-funded by The Heritage Council and Lakelands & Inland Waterways. The 130-kilometre trail takes visitors from Portumna in Galway down the western shore of the lake, to Killaloe in Clare, and back up on the eastern side to Terryglass in Tipperary. The stops along the route, which can be travelled in any direction, include walking routes, lakeshore access, great bird watching locations, woodland parks for adventuring, and quiet spots to enjoy the beautiful vistas of Ireland’s third largest lake. Among the 24 discovery points featured is the monastic site at Inis Cealtra, known as the “Jewel of the Lough’, as well as the ancient woodlands of Portumna Forest Park, Derrycrag Wood, Raheen Wood and Cominchas Forest, the sheltered bays and harbours at Rosmore, Mountshannon …

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Lifeboat tows five to safety

While out on exercise last Thursday night, Lough Derg RNLI Lifeboat came to the assistance of five people whose boat had suffered engine failure, at the south western end of Lough Derg. At 8.30pm the lifeboat observed a boat, close to shore at Two Mile Gate, flash a distress signal with a torch. Upon investigation the lifeboat found five people, four adults and one child, on board a 20ft boat that had suffered engine failure. They had contacted two friends for assistance, but having attempted to tow them, the battery on their jet ski failed. The lifeboat crew, with helm Eleanor Hooker, Robbie Garland and Owen Cavanagh on board, secured the jet ski and took the boat with her passengers and an RNLI crew member on board, under tow to their mooring at Killaloe. Once the boat was safely tied alongside, the lifeboat took the two jet skiers plus their vessel upriver and under the bridge at Killaloe to their …

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Renewed fears for Lough Derg’s future

Forecasts of even bigger water shortages in the midlands and Dublin region will require a substantial increase in the volume of water needed from Lough Derg. Councillor Pat Burke has urged tourism, angling and business people living on the banks of Lough Derg to unite against Irish Water’s plans to increase the proposed diversion of water from the lake. The River Shannon Protection Alliance (RSPA) estimates that up to 350 million litres of water a day could be taken from Lough Derg by 2030, if Irish Water implements previous plans from Dublin City Council to address water shortages in the region. Irish Water had not responded to Clare Champion queries on Wednesday evening. A recent report revealed there is a “pressing need” for an additional supply of some 330 million litres a day by 2050. Options include taking water from the River Shannon and storing it in a reservoir to be built in the midlands, or constructing desalination plants. Dublin and …

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Alternative to Lough Derg abstraction proposed

A plan to take water from the Comeragh Mountains to deal with water shortages in the Dublin region would eliminate the need for the controversial Lough Derg water abstraction project, a retired Cork businessman has claimed. William K Loftus, who previously ran a plant hire and civil engineering business, has drafted proposals for what he described as an “elaborate plan to utilise the southern side of the Comeragh Mountains for freshwater storage and a hydro electric scheme by seawater in the lower lakes”. Mr Loftus maintains it can be achieved without interfering with the scenic aspect of the mountains on the Mahon Falls side. He has sent his proposal to Irish Water (IW), who hadn’t responded to a number of Clare Champion at the time of going to print. A Department of Environment spokesman stated the matter is for IW, while Environment Minister Alan Kelly’s private secretary acknowledged press queries from The Clare Champion but didn’t respond with a comment …

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Killaloe – the ‘Kinsale of the region’

RESIDENTIAL property sales clinched almost €15 million for home owners in South-East Clare last year, official figures have revealed. Some of the highest prices for homes were realised in Killaloe, Ogonnelloe and Broadford, where a stunning period house and lands netted almost €1 million, according to the Residential Property Price Register. “Killaloe is regarded as the Kinsale of the region. People aspire to come and live years over the years. Killaloe is a popular location for people who move into the area and can still travel a relatively short distance to work in Limerick, Shannon or Nenagh,” said John Phelan of Harry Brann Auctioneers. Even though the start of the year is usually considered to be a quiet period for auctioneers and property transactions, February 2014 proved to be an exceptional month, with total sales in South-East Clare netting an impressive €2.116 million. This compares with residential property deals worth €717,500 in January and €632,000 in March. Top of the …

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McNamara seeks Inis Cealtra sale support

CLARE TD Michael McNamara has written to the Minister for Tourism, Transport and Sport, Paschal Donoghue calling on him to support and provide financial assistance to Clare County Council to secure the purchase of Inis Cealtra (Holy Island). Inis Cealtra on Lough Derg is included among the early monastic sites on Ireland’s UNESCO Tentative List and is one of the most famous of such sites in Ireland. He highlighted to the minister that among its many attractions are a well preserved round tower, the ruins of six churches and a cell-like structure, which is one of the most extraordinary buildings in Ireland. “A Lough Derg Tourism Audit carried out in 2012 found that Lough Derg is not reaching its full potential in terms of attracting visitors and that Lough Derg has no defined ‘iconic’ visitor attraction that can act as a motivator for visits. “Inis Cealtra, with its iconic round tower, has the potential to be that driver of tourism …

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