Water charges and the weather


Sir, – It seems those who opposed the water charges regime are now to blame for, among all society’s other ills, the water shortages the country faces following the recent storm and snowfall. This is the charge implicit in Kathy Sheridan’s article (“Why are water charges still up for discussion?”, Opinion & Analysis, March 8th). Your letter-writers are also falling over themselves to get their unsubstantiated tuppence-worth in along the same lines (March 7th).

Perhaps those venturing this hunch (and since none of those writing have bothered to offer any evidence showing causality, it is merely a hunch) might like to explain why, following the same “weather event”, millions of residents in England and Wales were also urged to ration water and many thousands were left without water despite our neighbours’ adoption of water meters. Perhaps it is not the case that water meters automatically save the day and magically stop pipes bursting from rising temperatures. Maybe, just maybe, such once-in-a-generation weather will always cause high demand and concomitant problems for water utilities and companies. – Yours, etc,



Sir, – I call on Government to pay for my weekly consumption of Guinness. This can be funded out of general taxation. I already pay handsomely into Government coffers through income tax, PRSI, USC, VAT, property charges, etc. In effect, I’m being asked to pay twice for my pints.

Is my consumption of Guinness likely to increase if I get it for free? Quite likely.

I might even take a bath in it. – Yours, etc,



Co Wicklow.

Sir, – There is no sweeter sound during this thawing out than that of a flushing lavatory. – Yours, etc,



Co Clare.

Sir, – If you keep kicking the can down the road, it is bound to leak. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 4.