Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Questions (513)

Robert Dowds


513. Deputy Robert Dowds asked the Minister for Education and Skills if she will provide grants to schools for facilities for water harvesting. [40187/15]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I wish to advise the Deputy that rainwater harvesting systems were first trialled in 2004 and introduced for major school building projects in 2008. Since then all major school building projects, where site conditions and circumstances allow and where economically viable to do so, can incorporate a rainwater harvesting system.

While fitting the systems in new schools during construction is relatively straightforward, retrofitting them in existing schools is much more difficult and expensive because of the various dedicated pipe work systems, both within the building and externally, and the amount of making good that is required to the school building.

I also wish to inform the Deputy that for existing buildings it is more cost effective to minimise the demand for water firstly through installing measures to reduce water usage, such as push type spray taps, low flushing toilets, urinal controls, repairing leaks etc. To this end schools were invited in 2010 to apply for Water Conservation measures and funding of almost €10m was made available to promote water conservation measures as part of this initiative.