Local authority engages in number of clean-up operations

Roscommon County Council’s Environment section says it has been adopting a “proactive and innovative way of combatting indiscriminate littering and dumping through a range of innovative and enterprising initiatives”.

In a press statement, the local authority said it has engaged in a number of clean-up operations on local access roads and areas of scenic beauty in the county, “transforming what were once litter blackspots into areas of visual attraction”.

The Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications made funding available through the Waste Enforcement Regional Lead Authorities to support Anti-Dumping Initiatives (ADIs) for 2022, aimed at funding projects to tackle waste problems using a collaborative approach engaging local authorities and local communities. As a result, Roscommon County Council received funding for a number of projects including awareness campaigns, clean-ups and bulky goods collections. The focus of the ADI was based on prevention, abatement, education and enforcement, and to date the total spend on these projects is €79,773.31.

Included in these projects were bulky goods collections at each of the county’s four Civic Amenity Sites, at which 27.8 tonnes of bulky waste, 1,082 mattresses, 209 couches, 260 bed bases and 280 armchairs were collected. In respect of mattresses, couches, bed bases and armchairs, Roscommon County Council worked with Bounce Back Recycling, resulting in these items being recycled and therefore diverted from landfill. Sadly these types of waste items continue to be found dumped in local countryside and bogs, which can have hazardous consequences for local flora and fauna, in addition to the visual impact of such dumping.

This ADI initiative gave the public the opportunity to dispose of items correctly at a nominal charge. The items in question are widely considered as difficult for householders to dispose of. All told, the cost of the project was €54,499.

  A further waste initiative led by Roscommon County Council’s Environment section is a campaign to minimise and perform clean-ups arising from indiscriminate roadside dumping, involving the Council’s Environment section working with their Boyle and Athlone Municipal District offices.

840 kg of waste and litter were removed during these clean-ups. Breaking down the figure further, 460kg was from the Strokestown area and a further 380kg of waste was collected in the Athlone area. The types of waste removed included plastic bottles, disposable coffee cups, fast food packaging and some household waste. The cost of carrying out the waste removals was €6,461.32.

Sarah Scott (Senior Staff Officer with Roscommon County Council) commented: “The roadside dumping initiative sheds a light on the importance of people bringing their waste home. Indiscriminate roadside dumping creates an unsightly, negative image of our county from a tourism, business and resident point of view”.