Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Water Charges have nothing to do with water conservation – Barron

New Ross Sinn Féin representative Ger Barron has argued strongly against government claims that the proposed water charge is about water conservation. Mr Barron said that such claims cannot be tolerated when up to 58% of treated water is being lost through leaking pipes before it ever reaches a household.

Speaking at the latest New Ross Sinn Féin meeting, Mr Barron said;
“Recently local Sinn Féin members have been supporting the anti water charges petition campaign being run by ‘No Water Charges Wexford’ in the New Ross area. We’ve been shocked to discover that a lot of people falsely believe that water charges are being introduced in an attempt to conserve water. The proposed water charge has nothing to do with water conservation. Up to 58% of treated water is being lost through leaks in our antiquated water supply system. A flat rate tax, or the introduction of water meters, will not fix these leaking pipes.”

“The government points to other countries where the introduction of a water charge has reduced water use by up to 14%. What they aren’t saying is that we may currently be losing two thirds of the treated water that is being produced every day because successive governments’ failed to deal with our eroding Victorian Water pipe network. The average Irish adult uses 150 litres of water per day (or 100 litres if you choose to accept the Fine Gael figures). However 450 litres of water is being produced per person per day in this nation. How can a tax greatly reduce what is being lost before it ever reaches a household?”

Mr Barron is urging the people of New Ross to get involved with the “No Water Charges Wexford” campaign. “We need volunteers to go door to door with our petition. We intend to visit every house in the county over the coming months. We also want people to come forward and organise action committees in their local parishes and villages. We can supply them with everything they need, from petitions to leaflets to t-shirts. The campaign is picking up momentum. Now is the time to oppose these charges, not when they are already in and your neighbour’s water supply is being cut off.”

Mr Barron said people can get more information about the campaign on the “No water charges Wexford” facebook group. A website has also been established at www.nowaterchargeswexford.blogspot.com.

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