‘Do the right thing’ and observe hosepipe ban, says Taoiseach

Varadkar calls on citizens to turn off tap while brushing teeth during heatwave

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: “I really would appeal to people to heed the advice and not to use hosepipes”. Photograph:  Jasper Juinen/Bloomberg

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: “I really would appeal to people to heed the advice and not to use hosepipes”. Photograph: Jasper Juinen/Bloomberg

 

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has asked people “to do the right thing as citizens” and obey the hosepipe ban starting on Monday aimed at conserving water supplies during the continuing heatwave.

Mr Varadkar stopped short of saying that the Government would impose fines for breaches of the ban, but said that “we can’t have people misusing it and wasting it.”

The Taoiseach went as far as to encourage people not to run the tap when they brush their teeth.

“The law is there and there are penalties under the law to allow us to fine people or prosecute people that waste water, but that’s not the approach that I think we should taking,” he told reporters in New York, where he is leading Ireland’s bid to secure a two-year seat on the UN Security Council.

“I think we should be asking people to do the right thing as citizens.”

If we don’t conserve water now, we do risk running short later in the year

Mr Varadkar said that it was “great” that it looked like there would be continuing hot weather over the coming weeks particularly after such a bad winter.

“But if we don’t conserve water now, we do risk running short later in the year, in August or September, so I really would appeal to people to heed the advice and not to use hosepipes, not to fill swimming pools, even simple things like not running the tap when you’re brushing your teeth,” he said.

“You’d be amazed the amount of water you can save just by doing that and everybody working together to ensure that we don’t all run out of water in a few weeks’ time.”

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney called for a “national effort” to save water during the hot weather.

“When we had an extreme weather event in winter, an incredibly cold spell with an awful lot more snow than anybody could remember, there was a huge effort nationally for people to support each other,” Mr Coveney said.

“There was an awful lot of voluntary effort that made a huge impact across communities,” he added.