Thursday, December 01, 2022

Irish Water is calling on companies of all sizes in Co Mayo to apply for its Water Stewardship Programme. It is Irish Water’s comprehensive training programme which helps organisations lower their water use, thereby reducing operating costs and protecting the environment.

More than 600 graduates from a variety of sectors including hospitality, education, manufacturing, transport, and more have now completed the programme to date as Irish Water welcomed 289 new water stewards at a recent ceremony at Trinity College Dublin.

Pictured are graduates of the Water Stewardship Programme held by Irish Water at a ceremony at Trinity College Dublin recently. Over 600 people have undertaken the programme, the first of its kind globally in what is an international best practice accreditation from the European Water Stewardship Programme. Picture: Maxwell Photography

The programme, the first of its kind globally, is an international best practice certification accredited by the European Water Stewardship Standard. The programme is endorsed by Ibec, Enterprise Ireland and Chambers Ireland, and supported by the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science.

Irish Water’s Water Stewardship Programme, delivered by Central Solutions and available for organisations in any sector, is fully funded by Irish Water and the Lean & Green Skillnet. Participants undertake two months of comprehensive virtual training to better understand how to conserve water in their organisation, including:

  • Creating a water map to visualise how and where water is used;
  • Reviewing their water monitoring strategy, and investigating how it may be updated/improved;
  • Identifying short payback water efficiency and conservation projects, such as rainwater harvesting;
  • Embedding governance processes to actively engage all stakeholders to conserve water;
  • Developing a water charter as an holistic approach to reducing water in their organisation.

Irish Water also recently launched its Annual Certification Scheme, whereby organisations have the opportunity to be recognised on Irish Water’s Wall of Honour. Showcased on its website, https://www.water.ie/conservation/business/water-stewardship/,  the Wall of Honour recognises organisations that have made massive strides in their water conservation efforts.

Companies across the board have already made significant progress in reducing their water use through participating in Irish Water’s Water Stewardship Programme, resulting in monetary and environmental benefits. For example, Dublin City University reduced its water consumption by over 50,000m3 annually, resulting in a saving of more than €100,000 in water costs. ABP also halved its water consumption, meaning it reached water conservation targets two years ahead of schedule.

Welcoming the new graduates, Yvonne Harris, Irish Water’s Head of Customer Operations, said: “More than 600 water stewards in organisations large and small are driving water conservation across Ireland. Through our programme, more than 1,500 new water conservation projects have been put in place, resulting in significant cost savings and benefitting the environment. Our programme is internationally recognised and is the first of its kind globally, and we encourage all organisations to apply online and take part.”

Ken Stockil, CEO at Central Solutions added: “As delivery partner for Irish Water, Central Solutions ensures participants in the Water Stewardship Programme understand the skills to reducing water, energy and related inputs across the four key principles of water stewardship, namely quality, quantity, governance and catchment. We welcome the new graduates and encourage companies across the board to get involved in the programme. Water stewardship is a collective and holistic approach that can achieve substantial economic, environmental and societal benefits for all water users.”

Those interested in participating in Irish Water’s Water Stewardship Programme can apply on Irish Water’s dedicated webpage: https://www.water.ie/conservation/business/water-stewardship/water-stewardship-training-programme/

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