Document Type



Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence

Publication Details

Marine Pollution Bulletin, Vol. 71, No. 1-2, pp. 117-128


A hydro-environmental model is used to investigate the effect of cessation of thermal discharges from a power plant on the bathing water quality of Dublin Bay. Before closing down, cooling water from the plant was mixed with sewage effluent prior to its discharge, creating a warmer, less-saline buoyant pollutant plume that adversely affects the water quality of Dublin Bay. The model, calibrated to data from the period prior to the power-plant shut-down (Scenario 1), assessed the water quality following its shut-down under two scenarios; (i) Scenario 2: continued abstraction of water to dilute sewage effluents before discharge, and (ii) Scenario 3: sewage effluents are discharged directly into the Estuary. Comparison between scenarios was based on distribution of Escherichia coli (E. coli), a main bathing quality indicator. Scenarios 1 and 2, showed almost similar E. coli distribution patterns while Scenario 3 displayed significantly higher E. coli concentrations due to the increased stratification caused by the lack of prior dilution.