NI Water has again refused to consider secondary treatment of sewage at Islandmagee, despite the prospect of up to 60,000 tourists a year visiting the Gobbins in the near future.
Larne Borough Council has campaigned at length for upgrading of a primary screening scheme being installed at Ballystrudder which will pump virtually untreated sewage in to the North Channel through a 150-metre outfall pipe. When DRD Minister Danny Kennedy attended a meeting with councillors recently, his Ulster Unionist colleague Ald Roy Beggs asked him to instruct officials to instigate a review of the sewerage system in Islandmagee and district.
Ald Beggs asked for an assurance that an option to upgrade to secondary treatment would be kept under active review as the population grows. In addition, he requested a review of NI Water’s work at Millbay, where first-time mains sewerage had proved to be inadequate, with residents lobbying councillors to complain about pollution caused by faulty pumps; and asked when the sewage works at Toreagh/Mounthill would be extended to cope with housing developments.
A NI Water spokesman reiterated the company’s response that the proposed scheme at Ballystrudder complies with current EU standards, adding that if the population exceeded 10,000 then secondary treatment works must be provided, at a cost of around £5 million.
In respect of Millbay, the official stated that there was a feasibility study to establish if anything could be done with the sewage system. He pointed out that there appeared to be a lot of ground water.