Irish councils receive funding boost to tackle litter

The Irish Government has provided local authorities with 1.5M euros in a bid to tackle graffiti and littering at key tourist locations as part of its anti-graffiti and tourist season anti-litter grant schemes.

The funding, which was announced last month (July 2011), follows the 2010 national litter pollution monitoring system report, which provides statistical data about the extent, causes and composition of litter in Ireland.

Environment minister, Phil Hogan, welcomed the report, saying it demonstrates how litter levels across the country are improving.

The report revealed a decrease of 0.7% of 2009 littering levels, with an increase in litter free areas from 6.8% in 2009 to 9.7% in 2010. Cigarette related litter was identified as the main cause of litter nationally.

Hogan said: “My department is committed to providing support to litter awareness initiatives in order to educate and create greater public awareness of the positive social and economic effects a litter free environment can help provide.”

According to Hogan, the Irish Government will continue to engage with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), local authorities, the National Roads Authority (NRA), Fáilte Ireland, community groups and other interested stakeholders to ensure that litter levels continue to improve across the country.

Hogan added: “It is crucial that we all work together to present the country in the best possible light. We must create an attitude amongst the public that littering is an unacceptable, anti-social behaviour with damaging societal and economic consequences. Together we can make a difference.”

Carys Matthews

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