Dáil Éireann - Volume 410 - 02 July, 1991

Written Answers. - Water Supply Fluoride Levels.

148. Mr. McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment if he will outline the guidelines and standards which must be complied with for the testing of fluoride levels; if he will further outline (1) the current levels in mainstream water supplies and (2) the degree of supervision and monitoring of these levels which is maintained and by whom; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Minister for the Environment (Mr. Flynn): The Minister for Health and the health boards administer the principal legislation relating to fluoridation of water supplies. In addition however, the European Communities (Quality of Water Intended for Human Consumption) Regulations, 1988, made by the Minister for the Environment, apply a standard of 1,000 micro grams per litre for fluoride in drinking water. This is consistent with the differently prescribed standard in Regulations made under the Health (Fluoridation of Water Supplies) Act, 1960, and is more stringent than the maximum level of 1,500 micro grams per litre fixed under the EC Drinking Water Directive.

Comprehensive advice on the drinking [262] water regulations has been issued to the sanitary authorities in a handbook published by the Environmental Research Unit. Monitoring of supplies in accordance with these regulations is a matter for the sanitary authorities and the extensive sampling results available show compliance in excess of 80 per cent.