Irish goat farm achieves ‘water champion’ status

Family-run Broughgammon Farm in Ballycastle has become the second farm to receive the Consumer Council's 'Water Champion's' Award for reducing usage and saving money through the implementation of efficiency measures.

As well as developing an energy efficient home, the family has installed a rainwater harvesting system which provides non-drinking water to the house. A separate system provides water for the 300 goats and for the onsite processing of local seaweed.

The farm’s butchery also profits from water efficiency measures such as low flow taps and the installation of a new waste water treatment plant ensures that naturally cleansed water is returned to the environment.

In addition to its water initiatives, the farmhouse benefits from full insulation, thermal-gain glazing, an air source heat pump, solar-thermal heating, rain water harvesting, wind turbines and an anaerobic septic tank system.
The majority of household waste is actively recycled, reused or composted, while farm plastics and metals are all recycled where possible.

Run by brothers Charlie and Sandy Cole, the 50 acre farm, which specialises in Cabrito (Kid Goat Meat), seaweed and rare breed soay sheep meat, recently featured on the BBC Northern Ireland series, ‘Farm Fixer,’ hosted by Lord Sugar’s right-hand-man Nick Hewer.

Speaking about the award Sandy Cole said; “We have gone to some effort to ensure that the home and farm is energy and water efficient. We have two 10,000 litre rainwater tanks to provide non-drinking water to the house and the option of adding treatment at a future date so the water is drinkable.

“We plan to go further by installing a water turbine to complement the two wind turbines already in place. We would encourage all farms to look at their water usage as there are considerable environmental and financial benefits to be gained from maximising water efficiency around the land and home, it’s simple forward thinking farming,” he added.

Consumer Council, an independent consumer organisation, interim chief executive, Aodhan O’Donnell, said: “We were very impressed by the farm’s clear commitment to the protection of the environment through all its farming practices and the measures it took to become more water efficient in both the home and on the farm”.

Leigh Stringer

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie