The 18th Annual Rural Water Services Conference ‘Enhancing resilience and sustainability in the group water scheme sector’ took place in Athlone on Thursday, 12th September 2019 - conference programme.

Addressing 315 delegates at the Rural Water Conference in Athlone on 12 September, Minister of State for Community Development, Natural Resources and Digital Development, Seán Canney, TD, described the group water scheme sector as ‘one of the finest examples of a movement that is community-led in spirit and structure, but professional in how it goes about its work.

As a member of a group water schemes himself (Belclare GWS, County Galway), he expressed confidence that those involved in the rural water services sector are ‘best placed to provide a progressive, efficient, reliable and sustainable water service for rural communities’.

Urging continued ‘careful planning’, he stressed the need for capacity-building to enable drinking water service providers ‘to handle unexpected challenges’ arising in ‘an ever-changing environment’, including the ‘increased focus on climate’. The Minister added:

‘If sustainability is about survival, resilience is about being able to overcome the unexpected, to adapt and to thrive.’

For the full text of Minister Canney’s address, click here.

For presentations to the Rural Water Conference, click here.

The 19th Annual Rural Water Services Conference will take place in Athlone on Thursday, 10th September 2020.