Irish waste taxes to be recycled

The Irish government plans to spend environmental taxes on the environment and is using €88m raised through levies on plastic bags and landfill sites to reduce the impact of waste produced by the country's householders.

The country’s Environment Minister, Dick Roche, told reporters that the Environment Fund 2007 would be spent on recycling infrastructure, boosting local authorities’ recycling efforts and enforcement.

“We are backing words with deeds,” he said.

“This level of expenditure will mean more recycling facilities for communities. Recycling figures are improving but with more facilities in place, I expect to see more improvements.”

€32m will be made available to local authorities for capital expenditure on waste recycling infrastructure while councils will receive an additional €12m to run existing facilities.

Local authorities will receive €9m to tackle waste crime and the Office of Environmental Enforcement (OEE) will get €2.1m for its national work.

“We are making significant progress in this whole area and I am anxious that the progress continues,” said Mr Roche.

“The structures are now in place to deal with all breaches of waste legislation and I am determined to stamp out such activity in order to protect our environment. Those that break the law must get the message that that the law will be enforced.”

Other allocations include €8.5 for the EPA’s research and development programme, €6.8 million for local authority collections of farm plastics, €3.2 million towards environment awareness, €2.8 million towards the National Waste Prevention Programme, €2.5 million for the Market Development Programme and €1.9 million towards litter initiatives.

Other money will be used to support international environmental efforts, such as the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and collaborative projects between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Sam Bond

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