Dáil Éireann - Volume 420 - 27 May, 1992

Written Answers. - Shannon Navigation Authority.

56. Mr. Connor asked the Minister for Finance if he will consider the establishment of a new River Shannon navigation authority with representatives from all the major interests affected by the changing levels of the river, and his views on whether the present arrangement, where only two bodies, the Office of Public Works and the ESB, have control of the navigation and water levels, is satisfactory.

Minister of State at the Department of Finance (Mr. N. Treacy): Under the terms of the Shannon Navigation Act, 1990, the Commissioners of Public [685] Works are the Navigation Authority for the River Shannon.

I established the River Shannon Forum in October 1988, to provide a mechanism whereby the various bodies, both statutory and otherwise, having responsibilities and special interests in the River Shannon; could come together in order to facilitate the co-ordination of their views. The Forum has met regularly since and is proving to be an excellent framework for discussion and co-operation. I am satisfied that the Forum is working well and indeed I was very pleased to attend its last meeting. I have no plans to change the present position relating to the Navigation Authority. With regard to the control of the navigation by the Office of Public Works and of the water levels by the ESB, I am able to say that there is excellent co-operation between the commissioners and the ESB in relation to the control of water levels for navigation and power generation and the shared responsibility is not presenting any problems.