Skip the NI Direct Bar
Skip navigation

Water & Sewerage

Welcome to the Water Policy and Shareholder Division of the Department for Regional Development.

The Drinking Water Inspectorate’s Drinking Water Quality Report for 2014

The Drinking Water Inspectorate’s Drinking Water Quality Report for 2014 is published on the 31 July 2015. The report provides details and commentary on the drinking water quality for both the public water supply provided by Northern Ireland Water, and for registered private water supplies.’

Water Fittings Relaxation Request

Northern Ireland Water has applied for the following Relaxation of the item described in the attached link under Regulation 10 of the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2009.

It is the intention of the Department for Regional Development to grant this relaxation following a period of 30 days from this date 13 November 2014.

The Rural Borewells Scheme

After three years, the Rural Borewells Scheme closed on 31 March 2015.  The Scheme which opened in June 2012 was a partnership between the Department for Regional Development and the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.  

The Scheme provided up to £12,000 towards the cost of a private borewell for rural households to obtain a wholesome water supply where it was not technically or financially feasible to access the public water mains.

The Rural Borewells Scheme produced benefits for applicants, for the taxpayer and for the Government.

During the three years of the Scheme, 80 householders who could not access the public main gained a wholesome water supply for the first time.  These householders now have the assurance of a high quality water supply that is safe to drink.  The average cost of providing these properties with mains water was £94,000.  This would have required individual applicants to contribute £82,000 for a mains supply.

The 2014/15 Rural Borewells Scheme had a budget of £312,000.  If the taxpayer footed the bill for these properties to access the mains, NI Water estimate that it would have cost £2,132,000.

The Scheme also provided new geological information which could assist in identifying where best to abstract water from the environment and natural sources of contamination of water supplies.

Revised Water Stakeholders Partnership Agreement

The Minister for Regional Development, Danny Kennedy MLA, has welcomed the publication of the revised Water Stakeholders Partnership Agreement (first published in October 2008) which was recently endorsed by the statutory bodies involved in the governance of the water industry.   The Partnership Agreement sets out structures for co-operation and principles for working together for key stakeholders – the Utility Regulator, the Consumer Council, NIW, DRD, the Drinking Water Inspectorate and the NI Environment Agency - to achieve the common objective of 'Getting water and sewerage services right for today’s and tomorrow’s consumers and taxpayers through good governance that achieves the right balance of efficiency, fairness, affordability, sustainability, value for money and quality.’

Review of Financial Assistance for Domestic Properties not Served by a Water Main

In November 2010, the Department for Regional Development published a consultation on proposals to review the provision of financial assistance for domestic properties not served by a water main.  The consultation ended on 4 February 2011 and the Department received approximately 50 responses.  In addition, officials held public meetings in three locations to gauge the reaction of the people in some of the areas that are not served by water mains.  A report summarising respondents’ views and the Department's proposals on improving financial assistance for householders to obtain a wholesome water supply can be obtained by clicking the following link