County Council agrees to investigate possible case of water contamination in lake near Castlemartyr
Cork County Council has agreed to investigate concerns about possible contamination in Loughaderra near Castlemartyr.
Amid fears of a risk to wildlife, the council referred concerns to the Department of Fisheries after Cllr Noel Collins said the “condition and colour of the water” was reminiscent of times past when the lake was polluted.
The lake was “once beautiful but is now destroyed by pollution”, he said.
The council’s senior executive scientist Frank O’Flynn said the lake, 1.5 metres deep, was fed by springs but had negligible water movement and turnover.
Located in “a highly sensitive agricultural area, with intensive dairy and tillage farming”, Mr O’Flynn said there were “no farmyards in direct contact with the lake” and no apparent risk from direct run-off of slurry soiled water. Likewise, there was no danger from an estimated 45 septic tanks in the vicinity or from other discharges from nearby dwellings, he explained.
He revealed, however, “the main impact on water quality in the lake is from diffuse loss of nutrients from agriculture and from septic tanks servicing individual dwellings, to groundwater in the catchment area”. Groundwater inflows carrying nutrients contribute to algae growth which, along with weeds, low rainfall, and the shallo depth, was responsible for any wate
Last year, the council sent advisory leaflets warning locals of risks fro functioning septic tank systems”. He said the most common fault with sewage tanks was “they are not being desludged on a regular basis”.