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The catchments team work with a wide range of organisations both within and outside Ireland. In this video, Eleanor Jennings and Brian MacDonald speak about their own particular areas and how water quality may be improved.


four year (2019-2023) collaborative project funded by the EPA and the Office of Public Works (OPW), researchers from TCD, UCCNewcastle University and the James Hutton Institute are assessing the benefits of Natural Water Retention Measures (NWRM) for agricultural catchments in Ireland. 


This EPA/DAFM funded project is investigating the effectiveness of mitigation measures on water quality in Ireland and considering future changes in population growth, land use and climate change.

iCRAG Project GW3.2 

This project is investigating the occurrence of emerging organic contaminants from agriculture to groundwater in karst and fractured bedrock aquifers throughout Ireland. Looking at the frequency of occurrence of these contaminants (mainly anti-parasitic agents), it is seeking to determine the source factors (point and diffuse such as land spreading of manures and slurries, etc) and pathway factors such as soil, bedrock, etc. For more information, visit the iCRAG website.


This project (EPA funded) is focused on key estuarine areas in Ireland that are affected by seaweed blooms: Argideen and Clonakilty estuaries, Co. Cork; Tolka estuary, Co. Dublin and Killybegs estuary, Co. Donegal. It aims to identify the pressures these estuaries face in relation to macroalgal bloom occurrences and assess management actions aimed at reducing blooms in a global change context. 


This EPA/DAFM funded research project uses a multi-disciplinary approach to understand the use of pesticides in the environment and develop a low-cost, passive, in situ method for their remediation. 

Smarter BufferZ

This joint Teagasc / James Hutton Institute project aims to ensure optimal targeting and management of riparian buffers for the effective management of Irish rivers. For more information visit this Teagasc page and also the project's YouTube channel.


Funded by the EPA & DAFM, the objective is to evaluate the extent, connectivity and nature of Irish roadways and their role in nutrient transport. In time the project will devise and test mitigation strategies including best management practices and engineering solutions and more information is available on this Teagasc webpage.


Funded by the EPA and  building on previous Irish and international research,  this project is developing catchment models and tools to inform catchment management and water management policy.  Participants come from a number of institutions including Durham University, University of Reading, Rothamsted Research, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute. For more information see the UCD Dooge Centre for Water Resources Research DiffuseTools project page.


Funded by the Interreg Atlantic Area Programme, the project aims to increase the competitiveness, sustainability and resilience of dairy farms in the Atlantic area. It involves five countries (Ireland, United Kingdom, France, Spain and Portugal), 12 Atlantic regions and a diverse range of milk production systems. Some of these participating farms are in the ACP.


A Marie Curie initiative, this is a Europe-wide research network focused on all aspects of soil and groundwater remediation. It provides advanced training to early-stage researchers related to the sustainable intensification of agriculture and develop low-technology management solutions. The project is working with a range of bodies across nine European countries and the Castledockerell catchment is one of the study sites. The other catchments are located in Belgium, Germany, Poland and Switzerland.


Co-funded by the EPA and DAFM, this project approaches the issue of water quality from the scientific, institutional and behavioural perspectives. Crossing over between research and knowledge transfer, there are a wide range of bodies involved including UCG, UCDLAWCO and National Rural Network.

Past Projects

WaterProtect (2017 - 2020)
Funding: EU Horizon 2020 Programme (Grant agreement No 727450)
Aim: To develop new solutions and tools where water pollution from intensive agriculture may affect the quality of the drinking water
ACP role: Ballycanew and Castledockrell were one of the Action labs in WaterProtect - the other six were in Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Poland, Romania and Spain
More information: The final conclusions of the project were presented during a virtual, final conference webinar on 24 September 2020. The webinar video and the speakers presentations are available at water-protect.eu
COSAINT (2015 - 2019)
Funding: EPA Research Programme 2014–2020
Aim: To assess the effect of cattle access to watercourses on water quality
ACP role: Led by Teagasc, researchers countries from Dundalk Institute of TechnologyDublin City University  and University College Dublin studied a number of sites - three were in the Dunleer catchment 
More information: End of project EPA Research Report No 330. COSAINT: Cattle Exclusion from Watercourses - Environmental and Socio-economic Implications. Download PDF