Did you know?

Lough Neagh is the largest lake in Ireland and the largest body of freshwater in Britain and Ireland. It has a surface area of 383km2 and borders five of the six counties in Northern Ireland. 

What’s happening? 

The Lough is currently suffering from a widespread outbreak of Blue/Green Algae. These Algal blooms are harmful to humans, and they have also proved fatal to some wildlife lived in the Lough. There have been reported incidents of fish, birds and dogs dying as a result of contact with the Algae. Businesses which use the Lough for fishing and dredging have been impacted by the outbreak.

Those who use the Lough for recreational purposes have also been affected. The Lough Neagh Monster Dunkers, who regularly use the Lough for open-water swimming and cold water therapy, have had to find a new temporary home until the issues have been resolved. The group has over 600 members and they are now having to travel to different fresh water sources each week until they can return to the Lough.

The outbreak has caused concerns amongst residents of Northern Ireland, where 40% of their drinking water comes from the Lough. Northern Ireland Water has reassured customers that the water they receive into their homes is safe to drink due to the intensive treatment process the water goes through.

This week we hear from Chris Judge from The Lough Neagh Monster Dunkers and NI Water’s Dymphna Gallagher.