The Teagasc Water Quality Week will take place from Monday, March 22 to Friday, March 26, in collaboration with dairy processing co-ops and the Local Authority Waters Programme (LAWPRO).
During the week, Teagasc says it “will provide water quality focused information and advice to farmers to help minimise losses of nutrients, sediment and pesticides to water from their farming practices”.
“Water Quality Week will cover a broad range of topics and will be available to farmers and the public, primarily through short videos; social media channels; digital media platforms; and also print articles in local print media,” explained Noel Meehan, programme manager with the Agricultural Sustainability Support and Advisory Programme (ASSAP).
Each day will be dedicated to a particular theme and will look to explain a range of water quality problems and provide practical advice and solutions to farmers.
LAWPRO will begin the week by exploring the importance of water quality to farmers and explaining how water quality is measured and where the public can access information on the streams and rivers of Ireland.
On Tuesday, the Teagasc and co-op ASSAP advisors will provide information on nitrogen with the help of researchers from Teagasc Johnstown Castle.
Information will be provided on how nitrates interact with soil and what farmers can do to minimise diffuse nitrate losses from their farms.
On Thursday the focus will be on pesticide use on farms and how these can impact streams and rivers and also drinking water supplies.
There will also be a focus on the roles that agro-forestry and wetlands can play in helping to protect and improve water quality.
Finally, on Friday, the week will be closed out by explaining the importance of good farmyard management practices as these “play a vital role in minimising point source losses of nutrients”.
There will also be an opportunity to tune into the weekly Teagasc Signpost webinar for additional information and discussions on the topics covered by Water Quality Week.