Meath West TD Peadar Toibín has queried whether the underground water leak that has disrupted work at Tara Mines in recent days is in any way linked to the fact that numerous households in the Shambo/Robinstown area had their private wells sucked dry.

And he has called on the Environmental Protection Agency and Meath County Council to immediately investigate what is going on in Tara.

`Earlier this month Meath Live revealed that close to a hundred homes in the Shambo area, of Robinstown just outside Navan, are currently without water after their private wells have been bled dry.

Angry residents have expressed concern that the problem may be related to works currently being undertaken by Tara Mines in the area.

Tara Mines owners have conceded they are operating in Shambo and are pumping water underground into the Boyne, although they have denied liability for the issue.

They are currently supplying the houses involved with tankers of water at the moment.

Now Toibín has told us, ‘“Given that so many families have had their wells run dry in the vicinity of Tara Mines. it’s hard to understand that this colossal body of water that has been displaced underground is not linked to these wells running dry in the vicinity of the mine. Many families are months without water. This is not good enough in the 21st Century. We are requesting that Meath County Council and the EPA carry out a full and detailed investigation into what’s happening”.

He added, “Information is emerging that the scale of the disaster below ground in Tara Mines is larger than people first expected. I understand that the body of water is enormous and that efforts are still being made to pack the hole to stop the flow. The most important issue is that staff are kept safe. But this difficulty poses a number of serious questions for Tara Mines and for Meath. Where is all the water going to be discharged to? Will it be discharged to the Boyne? If so will it be safe or will it have an effect on the river’s ecosystem?”

“We welcome that the management has given assurances over jobs and we would ask that as time goes by that they continue to give these assurances. Tara Mines is very important to the economic welfare of Co Meath. Boliden is a private company with responsibilities to its shareholders but it also works in partnership with the community of Meath. It’s important that people understand what are the implications of this for the Tara Deep seam that is the mine’s future”.