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News

 

Events

 

Jun 2019 right left

     

Celebrating Forty Years of Grass Roots

Saturday 1st June
Saintfield Estate
Free

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Whiterocks Sand Dunes, near Portrush – Bracken Control

Sunday 9th June
Whiterocks Sand Dunes near Portrush
Free

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BioBlitz – Castlewellan Forest

Friday 14th June
Castlewellan Forest Park
Free

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BioBlitz – Jubilee Farm

Friday 21st June
Jubilee Farm, 50 Glenburn Rd, Glynn, Larne BT40 3JY
Free

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Rea’s Wood, Antrim – Himalayan Balsam Control

Sunday 23rd June
Rea’s Wood Antrim
Free

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Freshwater

Water is an essential natural resource that plays a vital role in maintaining biodiversity, our health and well–being and economic development. Sustainable water management delivers water quality, flood abatement, climate change mitigation, landscape and wildlife and provides valuable recreational and aesthetic benefits to residents and visitors to Northern Ireland.

Freshwater

The EU Water Framework Directive (WFD), through river basin management planning, establishes an integrated and holistic approach to sustainable water use, balancing social and economic factors with the need to protect and improve our water environment. The general objective of the WFD is to achieve ‘Good Ecological Status’ (GES) for all rivers, lakes and marine waters by 2021. Delivery of the WFD in NI is divided into three distinct River Basin Districts. Approximately 37% of surface waters are of sufficient quality to meet the requirements of the WFD.

Diffuse pollution from farm, road, residential and commercial run–off contributes directly to aquifers, rivers, lake and wetland contamination. Given that agriculture is a major source of diffuse pollution in Northern Ireland, this sector is key to identifying and delivering potential solutions.

NIEL provides a secretariat service to the Freshwater Task Force which represents a range of organisations working together to ensure that Northern Ireland protects and improves freshwater ecosystems, actively promotes the sustainable management of our freshwater resources and fully implements the Water Framework Directive.

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The Northern Ireland River Basin Management Plans report that only 21% of water dependent protected areas are in favourable status and 11% have not been assessed.

It is estimated that there are some 120,000 septic tanks in Northern Ireland. While a properly installed and maintained septic tank system is not likely to have any adverse impact on the environment, it is estimated that at least 12,000 septic tanks are not in possession of necessary discharge consents.

Northern Ireland Water supplies 619 million litres of water every day and treats 134 million m³ of wastewater each year. On average we each use approximately 150 litres a day with about 95% of the water delivered to our homes going down the drain.

We already use 70% more water today than we did 40 years ago.

River monitoring is carried out routinely against national standards for the Water Framework Directive (WFD). Almost one quarter (23%) of monitored river waterbodies were of at least a ‘good’ standard in 2011, compared to 22% in 2010.