South Dublin County Council Launches New Guide for Sustainable Drainage

Sustainable Drainage Systems Launch

South Dublin County Council (SDCC) has launched a new guide for a sustainable approach to managing surface water while enhancing the natural landscape of South Dublin County. The ‘Sustainable Drainage Explanatory, Design and Evaluation Guide 2022’ was launched in Sean Walsh Park, Tallaght by the Mayor of South Dublin County, Cllr Peter Kavanagh, SDCC Chief Executive, Daniel McLoughlin, Teresa Walsh, Director of Services for Environment, Water and Climate Change and other staff members of the Council. 

Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) is a way of managing rainfall and surface water that mimics drainage processes found in nature and address the issues with traditional surface water drainage. The guide aims to help create multi-functional spaces that manage the water quantity, water quality, help promote biodiversity and provide better amenity to all. Traditional surface water management involved hard engineered ‘grey’ solutions such as pipes and attenuation tanks to collect and quickly convey rainwater to the sewer network and ultimately the river network. This contributes to flooding and water pollution.

A SuDS is a flood management tool that provides cleaner water and can also be used as a means of making our towns and cities more attractive by enhancing the landscape. Examples of SuDS in the public realm include ponds and basins. Other systems, which can be incorporated into developments, include green roofs, permeable paving and rainwater harvesting.

To promote its use, South Dublin County Council developed a SuDS Explanatory, Design and Evaluation Guide for the County. This guidance document aims to improve consistency in applying SuDS for developments in South Dublin County and to promote a greater understanding and collaborative approach to design. This document will guide everyone involved in developing projects in the County to create sustainable developments. 

The development and promotion of SuDS and other nature-based solutions form part of SDCC’s Climate Change Action Plan 2019-2024. The Climate Change Action Plan includes over 130 climate initiatives and is recognised as a key enabler of ongoing public sector leadership, in implementing and influencing climate action in South Dublin County.

The new ‘Sustainable Drainage Explanatory, Design and Evaluation Guide 2022’ is available to download on

Speaking at the launch of the guide, Cllr Peter Kavanagh, Mayor of South Dublin County, said, “We are delighted to announce the publication of South Dublin County Council’s new Sustainable Drainage Explanatory, Design and Evaluation Guide. This document will guide and encourage sustainable surface water drainage for new developments in South Dublin County. Incorporating sustainable drainage systems into the design of developments will improve aspects such as biodiversity and public amenity not to mention the water quality of our rivers and streams making these areas a more pleasant, healthier and greener environment for us all to live, work and play.”

Daniel McLoughlin, Chief Executive of South Dublin County Council, said, “The new Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) guidance document will no doubt make a valuable contribution to South Dublin County in the future. Our drainage systems and watercourses have been subject to increasing pressure over recent years. The additional demand for new housing and new development in general within South Dublin means that the way we deal with surface runoff will have to evolve and adapt. Significant work has already been done in recent years to encourage the implementation of SuDS into new developments however the development of this document will further help us achieve our objectives and targets set out in our Climate Change Action Plan as well as our incoming County Development Plan 2022-2028 by ensuring SuDs are incorporated into new developments. It will allow us to maintain our commitment to deliver and facilitate new development within the county whilst focusing on important aspects which can and should be part of future development in South Dublin such as water quality, green infrastructure, biodiversity and public amenity.”

Pic: Ben Ryan 

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Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at



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