A broad-spectrum herbicide - Glyphosate - has been detected in exceedance, in the public drinking water in Newport, Co. Mayo, according to a statement by Irish Water.
The herbicide - found in a number of weed killer formulations - is used for the control of annual broadleaf weeds and grasses.
In a statement, Dr Pat O’Sullivan - Regional Drinking Water Compliance Specialist - said, “In Co. Mayo, the exceedance of the drinking water regulations for Glyphosate was noted in the Newport supply in May."
He added, “While the HSE has advised that the levels seen do not represent a threat to public health, it is however undesirable, and it is therefore imperative that users of pesticides are mindful of best practice when spraying their lands."
Appeal for farmers to follow guidelines
Irish Water are working in partnership with the National Pesticides and Drinking Water Action Group (NPDWAG) and are appealing to farmers, sporting organisations and other users of pesticides to carefully follow the guidelines when applying these chemicals to their lands.
A number of pesticides are being detected in drinking water more frequently.
Steps to reducing pesticide risks;
- Choose the right pesticide product,
- Read and follow the product label,
- Determine the right amount to purchase and use,
- Don’t spray if rain or strong wind is forecast in the next 48 hours,
- Make sure you are aware of the location of all nearby watercourses,
- Comply with any buffer zone specified on the product, label to protect the aquatic environment. Mark out the specified buffer zone from the edge of the river or lake or another watercourse,
- Never fill a sprayer directly from a watercourse or carry out mixing, loading or other handling operations beside a watercourse,
- Avoid spills, stay well back from open drains and rinse empty containers 3 times into the sprayer,
- Store and dispose of pesticides and their containers properly.
For further information on pesticide use, click here