TOBIN Consulting Engineers were contracted by BAM Civil Ltd to advise and supervise the removal of Invasive Species at Vartry Water Treatment Plant (WTP) pre-construction. The aim of the advice and supervision by the Ecological Clerk of Works was to identify high risk invasive species listed on Schedule Three – Part 1 of the Birds and Habitats Regulations (2011), which may be present in the vicinity of the proposed works. The removal of the invasive species was required prior to the commencement of construction works in accordance with the Invasive Species Management Plan as written by TOBIN. The removal of the invasive species was aimed at avoiding the spread of these species which can negatively impact all types of ecosystems.
Survey work undertaken by TOBIN Consulting Engineers confirmed the presence of two invasive species within the construction site at Vartry WTP, (Elodea canadensis) and Rhododendron (Rhododendron ponticum). Canadian waterweed was noted in three separate areas onsite: within the four settlement ponds located in the westerly section of the development area, in the southern most cluster of the sand filtration ponds and in the canal that runs around the perimeter of these ponds. Only the four settlement ponds are due for construction soon. The southernmost cluster of sand filtration ponds are due to be covered by a sculpted mound. TOBIN was informed that the area will be drained and filled in by BAM.
BAM have taken responsibility to ensure the safe removal and disposal of the waterweed at this site. The canal is due to be crossed with a pipe but in a location where Canadian waterweed (Elodea Canadensis) was not identified. Depending on the time lag between the 2018 surveys and the construction work on the canal, BAM will advise TOBIN once the construction work on the canal is scheduled so the requirement for an updated survey can be determined to confirm the continued absence of this species.