‘Exceedance’ of herbicide in Kilsellagh water supply in County Sligo

Excess pesticide has been found in a water supply in north Sligo.

The pesticide is MCPA and has been found in the public drinking water supply in Kilsellagh.

However, the official advice is that pesticides do not pose any IMMEDIATE risk to health.

CPA is a commonly used herbicide in many products used to control thistles, docks and rushes.

Irish Water says an ‘exceedance’ was noted in the Kilsellagh supply following routine sampling of drinking water.

The utility says it is providing advice and guidance to all users of pesticides, including the farming community, greens keepers and grounds keepers, and domestic users, to ensure that best practice measures to protect drinking waters are always followed.

Dr Pat O’Sullivan, Irish Water’s Regional Drinking Water Compliance Specialist, says both the Foxes Den Public Water Supply and Kilsellagh Public Water Supply in Sligo have previously had detections of pesticides.

While the HSE says the levels seen don’t seem to represent a threat to public health, Irish Water says it is undesirable, and it is therefore imperative that users of pesticides are mindful of best practice when spraying their lands.

Foxes Den gets its water from Lough Gill.

Kilsellagh gets its water from Kilsellagh impounding reservoir.

Irish Water says both sources are vulnerable to contamination from land and animal run-off.

Users of pesticide products in the Lough Gill and Kilsellagh catchment areas are being urged to consider the vulnerability of the water supplies to pesticide contamination — and the importance of this supply to the local community.