RTÉ One, Thursday, 8.30pm
Ear to the Ground

Programme 7

Water, Friend Or Foe?
Water is one of our most vital resources and a commodity that we have in abundance. However, it's not always available when we need it and often we have too much of it! This week Ear to the Ground will be exploring different aspects of this precious natural resource. One year on, Darragh McCullough goes to Gort where fears of flooding run high, Helen Carroll spends a day with a Gillie on the Connemara lakes and Ella Mc Sweeney meets an entrepreneurial farmer selling Irish water to the Dutch!

Come Hell And High Water
Images of the floods that hit the country in 2009 will remain etched in our memories forever. Three times the average rainfall for November fell in a matter of days. One area that suffered immensely was Gort in Co Galway. People were left without access to their land and many were forced to flee their homes. A year after the crisis, Darragh Mc Cullough meets farmers and residents in the area who are fighting for a guarantee that work on the M18 motorway will not lead to an even worse scenario. No drainage network has been put in place and locals fear that any damage caused to underground caves and swallow holes could mean further flooding.

Catch Of The Day
Fishing and angling are ever-popular pastimes, but often a novice angler can find the fish are just not biting. What they lack is local knowledge. Gillies know the best spots, best time of day and best methods for catching fish and are ready to impart this knowledge...for a small fee. It's an age-old tradition with many farmers working part time as Gillies. Helen Carroll sets out on the beautiful watercourses of Mayo to see whether, with expert advice, she can get the catch of the day!

From Farm To Bottle meet The Farmer bottling Spring Water
Residents of Ennis have had recurring issues with their water supply over the last number of years. Living near a town that is so often hit by water shortages, farmer Paul Connellan decided to search for water underneath his own land. One thousand feet underground he found natural spring water. Paul bottled the water and sells it as "Clare Spring Water". Ever conscious of the environmental impact bottled water has on the environment; Paul sourced a biodegradable bottle made from sugar beet starch, for his other product "Wellness Spring Water". Ella Mc Sweeney visits Paul to find out about his business, his biodegradable bottles and how a Clare farmer ends up supplying two million bottles of water per year to a Dutch airline.



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