The issue was raised by Ms. Rose Holland who claimed Bandon was filthy with rubbish, with torn black bags strewn around the streets. In her opinion, pay-by-weight introduced over two years ago, wasn’t working and she hated to think what must be stored in back gardens by people not in a position to dispose of all their rubbish. She wondered if a fairer method of taxation could be introduced in which everyone paid according to their means and proposed that the county council be asked to review pay-by-weight.
The manager, Mr. Noel O’Keeffe said that to do this would fly in the fact of the E.U. polluter pays principle but noted the comments made. Mr OKeefe neglected to mention that the irish government had not adopted this EEU legislation into irish law-and probably never will ,because farmers and big business would then also to pay-not just the little people with their domestic waste..
Mayor Pat Connolly agreed that pay-by-weight wasn’t working and had to be re-addressed because there were litter black spots all around the town. Unfortunately, there appeared to be an unwillingness or inability on the part of the county council to address and enforce the laws concerning illegal dumping. “Our countryside is being destroyed and I’ve never seen so many rats on our roads.”
The manager said it was easy to target local authorities but it was people who caused litter. The mayor said 95 to 99% of people were civic-minded, segregated waste, recycled and used bring and civic amenity sites but there had to be enforcement to deal with the minority who were not. He believed the buck stopped with the Department of the Environment which had to provide the necessary funding and resources to combat illegal dumping. At present, it seemed enforcement of the law depended on the revenue to be gained from it but the problem was coming up month after month and feelings were running high.
Mr. John Desmond seconded Ms. Holland’s proposal for a review of pay-by-weight and Mrs. Margaret Murphy-O’Mahony proposed that a letter be sent to waste management operations in County Hall expressing disappointment that they had to date not sent a representative to meet Bandon TC and repeating the request for this. Mrs. Liz O’Brien seconded.
Mr. Andrew Coleman said he would not be in favour of any system in which a polluter could benefit. He believed pay-by-weight was a good thing because it made people more conscious of the environment while the new Bandon civic amenity site was fantastic. Polluters were to blame, not the system. Mrs. Murphy-O’Mahony said no one was against recycling but it was fact one could see bags of ashes and nappies everywhere you walked.
Mr. Coleman also said there was a responsibility on landlords to provide adequate facilities for proper disposal of domestic refuse by their tenants. There were plenty of companies, along with the council, providing such a service so there was no excuse. In agreement, Mr. Bob Deane said he was convinced a lot of bags to be found next to street litter bins and outside business premises originated from apartments.
Since pay-by-weight came in, there had been a problem with people trying to dispose of rubbish in the shopping centre, said Mr. Don McCarthy who called for more prosecutions and one full time litter warden for Bandon town so that people would see that polluters did pay. Ms. Holland concurred, adding that such offences were most unfair on those struggling to make payments under pay-by-weight.
If you have -lets say- a box of ceramic tiles to dispose of, and they weigh a ton, (they are small but you going to pay a fortune to your local waste disposal contractor) are you going to dump them in the ditch down the road or pay up?
A DUBLIN local authority has spent millions of euro of taxpayers' money buying an illegal dump so that it can form part of an official landfill site.
Fingal County Council bought the land on which the illegal dump was sited to build the Tooman Nevitt landfill in north Dublin, currently being considered for planning permission by An Bord Pleanala.
Information released to a local opposition group says the council spent €8.3m buying the 40 acres of land on which the dump is located.
Waste operators Greenstar said the decision to purchase the site could contravene Government policy which required that illegal landfills were cleaned up by the landowner.
Yesterday, the council's director of services PJ Howell said the illegal dump was an "historic" landfill on which dumping continued after the expiry of a waste licence.
"We bought it because it was a strategic bit of land we needed."
The proposed new landfill, if granted permission, will accept half a million tonnes of waste each year and operate for up to 30 years.
April 14 2008
© Irish Independent