Two containerised water treatment plants have been sent to Ukraine in response to urgent calls for clean water in the war-torn region.
The mobile units, provided by Irish Water, have been shipped to the city of Lviv to immediately supply fresh drinking water for those most in need.
An estimated 1.4 million people have no access to safe running water in Eastern Ukraine alone, according to a recent report from UNICEF. There are also fears that improper burials in parks, gardens and public areas, could lead to contaminated drinking water.
"A basic right to clean water has been destroyed by Russia in a lot of regions and this donation will be essential to sustain those in need."
The self-contained units are capable of treating up to 40,000 litres per hour each, which will supply 6,200 people with the equivalent of 1.6 million one litre bottles of clean water per day. Both units contain filters, backwash pumps, ultra violet reactors and all necessary pipework and equipment to enable the technology to be operational very quickly when placed in situ.
To aid set-up, contact details are included within the units in English and Ukrainian. Support for commissioning and operating queries will be provided at no cost by Galway-based engineering contractor Coffey, which built the units. Videos detailing how to operate the units have also been recorded in Ukrainian and made available online.
Irish Water chief executive Niall Gleeson said: “Access to safe water is a fundamental human need, and we can often take it for granted given our access to fresh and safe water here in Ireland. We know that the situation in Ukraine has resulted in water supply being disrupted entirely or severely polluted, meaning it is unsafe for drinking.
"We hope our donation of these two units will play a role to help some of the people suffering in Ukraine access safe water.”
Ukrainian ambassador to Ireland Larysa Gerasko said: “From across Ireland there has been so much support shown to our people and country. A basic right to clean water has been destroyed by Russia in a lot of regions and this donation will be essential to sustain those who are currently in absolute need.”