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Water and Agricultural Waste

If you are looking for an Application form or Council Document you will find them in the All Publications section of this website or alternatively if you are looking for an Environment document or Applications form you can find in Environment Documents & Forms section of this website

Ireland is fortunate in having a relatively abundant supply of fresh water, which constitutes a key resource in economic, amenity and aesthetic terms. Approximately 50 per cent of the land area of the State is drained by just nine river systems. There are also over 12,000 lakes in Ireland. Due to past glaciation activity these are primarily located along the western seaboard and in the centre of Ireland, with relatively few in the east of the country. They are mostly shallow ( less than 5m depth ) well mixed lakes and due to their proximity to the Atlantic Gulf Stream are not exposed to extremes of temperature. High rainfall and relatively little disturbance has ensured that our lakes are overall of good ecological quality.

The majority of the recorded instances of slight and moderate pollution can be attributed to the impact of nutrient inputs from agriculture and municipal sources. The main effect of these contributions is eutrophication ( i.e. the enrichment of water by nitrogen and phosphorus, which are plant nutrients, leading to excessive plant and algal growth ). Environmental staff monitor water quality in our rivers and lakes with more detailed monitoring in the vicinity of our landfill sites. Parameter reports and sanitary authority reports are available upon request.

Discharge of Trade or Sewage to Waters

Under the Water Pollution Act, 1977, a licence is required for the discharge of trade effluent or other matter, other than domestic sewage or storm water, to any waters. It is an offence to make any such discharge except under and in accordance with a licence. The licensing system applies to all existing and new discharges.

Discharge of Trade Effluent to Sewers

Under the Water Pollution Act, 1977, a licence is required for the discharge of trade effluent or other matter, other than domestic sewage or storm water, to a sewer. It is an offence to make any such discharge except under and in accordance with a licence. The licensing system applies to all existing and new discharges.

Good Farming Practice

Good farming practice is common sense farming which cares for the environment and meets minimum hygiene and animal welfare standards. Good farming practice also involves complying with the law on the environment, hygiene, animal welfare, animal identification and registration and animal health. Never allow organic or chemical material to pollute a river, stream, lake, pond or domestic water supply. You will be liable if you cause pollution.

  1. You are liable to be prosecuted by Carlow County Council.
  2. You will subsequently lose payments under the schemes covered by Good Farming practice
  3. You will also be liable for damages.

Agricultural Discharges

Spreading of slurry and other organic wastes is regulated by the European Communities Good Agricultural Practice for Protection of Waters Regulations 2009 ( S.I.101 of 2009 ), available for download below. Part 4 of the regulations specify a number of controls on spreading operations including the following:

  1. Buffer zones from watercourses for chemical and organic fertiliser
  2. Buffer zones from drinking water abstraction points for organic fertiliser
  3. Controls on farmyard manure storage
  4. Restrictions on spreading due to weather conditions and ground conditions
  5. Restrictions on certain spreading machinery types

The application of fertiliser is prohibited during the following periods:

  1. For organic fertiliser from 15 October to 12 January
  2. For chemical fertiliser from 15 September to 12 January
  3. For farmyard manure from 1 November to 12 January

Fertiliser or soiled water cannot be spread under the following conditions:

  1. the land is waterlogged
  2. the land is flooded or likely to flood
  3. the land is snow-covered or frozen
  4. heavy rain is forecast within 48 hours
  5. the ground slopes steeply and, taking into account factors such as proximity to waters, soil condition, ground cover and rainfall, there is significant risk potential of causing water pollution.

The relevant buffer zones for organic fertiliser and soiled water are as follows:

  1. 200m from an abstraction point for drinking water which supplies more than 100 m3/day or more than 500 persons
  2. 100m from an abstraction point for drinking water which supplies more than 10 m3/day or more than 50 persons
  3. 25 m from any borehole not specified above
  4. The local authority may specify an alternative distance based on a technical evaluation of the particular supply

Waste Tyres

Please refer to the business waste section to find out more about farmers obligations under these regulations.

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