Vertigo geyeri and the plain people of the North-West. V. geyeri is a terrestrial pulmonate gastropod mollusc aka whorl-snail that is nowhere near as big shown [L] but more like this [Arial 10pt] g! I guess I'm here guilty of the same exaggeration for effect as the No campaign in their 2m tall foetal posters. These teeny creatures breathe air but live in wet-lands and don't fare well when their marshes get flooded . . . or dry out. It's a wee bit fussy and so acts as a sensitive indicator species; a bit like a miner's canary. The Environmental Protection Agency EPA have requested and required Irish Water to clean up the water supply for Glenties in Donegal. The water treatment plant is several decades old and cannot cope with either Cryptosporidium [prev] which flush the guts of the plain people of Donegal out goodo OR the mildly carcinogenic trihalomethanes [prev] which are an unintended consequence of chlorinating peaty water supplies.
But Irish Water cannot just fix the water treatment plant so that the identified environmemtal hazards are reduced or eliminated. No, they have to satisfy the County Council Planning Department that their solution to two problems doesn't launch another. Environmental legislation has largely originated in the EU where they have to leisure to care about the environment and the resources to carry out studies and then legislate to protect what they deem in need of protection . . . including Vertigo geyeri. Donegal CoCo doesn't even have discretion to give Irish Water a waiver on the necessary Environmental Impact Assessments. Likewise, the EPA's policies are driven forward by the EU Water Framework Directive / Wasserrahmenrichtlinie / Directive-cadre sur l'eau / Rámcové směrnice o vodě / Vesipuitedirektiivi. Irish Water are caught between the rock of planning and the hard-place of protection and has to pay at both ends. Indeed, all of the players are spending government money in the very Irish pass-time of lawyering up and trying to do the minimum in order to move on.
The plain people of Donegal are thus suffering years of paying for cruddy drinking water and occasionally losing a few citizens to a session of very loose bowels because of a mollusc so small that not even the French would eat it. The Utilitarians among us [meeeeee!] will want to suggest that someone does a risk-assessment and balances the QALYs of 2,000 person/puka-puka days and 20 cases of cancer in 20 years time vs the rights, privileges and utility of 20kg of Vertigo geyeri.
farm manager says that the dams are not illegal but he hadn't been in a hurry to sort out 'normal' seepage.
That's why we have rules and regs and the bureaucrats to enforce them. They are a total pain in the tits when they stop us doing something but without them we'd have more child-killing tragedies, as the pursuit of money outstripped someone's sense. And what does Mt Patel irrigate with all that water? Roses . . . for the European market . . . a business which works because
About one dam thing after another, I've had an absurd amount to say,
- 09 Oct 1963 Vajont 50 million tonnes
- 27 Mar 2009 Gintung 2 million tonnes
- 02 Niv 1925 Eigiau 1.5 million tonnes
- 04 Oct 2010 Ajka 1 million tonnes
- 09 May 2018 Patel Solai 70,000 tonnes