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The university hopes the facility will become a ‘test bed’ for novel waste water and water treatment technologies.

Its facility at Tuam, County Galway, was officially opened today (February 8) by Michael Finneran, minister for housing and local services.

Irish Environment Protection Agency director, Laura Burke, said: “With a rising population and increasing requirements for improved water quality, there is a real need to develop and optimise waste water treatment systems, especially for villages and small towns.

The site will be operating at a scale equivalent to a village with a population of 400.

Mr Finneran said: “Work funded through the EPA STRIVE Research programme is continuing to deliver new and innovative responses to environmental problems.

“It will also make a significant contribution to the development of Ireland’s smart economy.

“The Tuam Water Research Facility is an excellent example of this, employing solutions generated by Irish researchers to deliver high performance results at low operating costs.

“As work progresses at the facility, it will also contribute towards implementation of the Water Framework Directive in Ireland.”

Luke Walsh

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