• 04May

    Funding aimed at keeping key tourist areas clear of litter

    Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, John Gormley today launched a scheme to support local authorities in keeping key tourist areas clear of litter during the summer. “Unfortunately, some people continue to behave irresponsibly in discarding litter, leaving local authorities to clean up after them. Those who litter, damage the environment and the economy,” said the Minister. The scheme will provide a total of €1.5m over the next three years to support cleaning of key scenic, rural and visitor areas during the peak tourist season from May to September.

    “It is vital that, as we move towards economic recovery, everyone plays their part in presenting Ireland in the best possible light to tourists and potential investors,” commented the Minister speaking in advance of the launch of the Irish Business against Litter’s Anti-Litter League for 2010.

    Minister Gormley also pointed out that the key to achieving a clean environment was improved individual responsibility and behaviour. “In order to drive changes in behaviour, I am also providing local authorities with €1m in Litter Awareness Grants for 2010,” the Minister announced. The grants are used for public education and awareness initiatives by local authorities in relation to both litter and graffiti.

    Welcoming the funding announced, Shaun Quinn, Chief Executive of Fáilte Ireland emphasised that “More than nine out of ten people cite our landscapes as one of the biggest selling points for a visit to Ireland, yet litter has long been a bugbear for Irish tourism. Fáilte Ireland’s research annually records litter as one of the negatives raised most often by visitors. When you consider that tourism generates €6bn a year for our economy and supports 200,000 jobs, we need to view littering as a serious concern – a type of economic vandalism. For that reason, Fáilte Ireland welcomes today’s announcement and we will continue to work with our colleagues in the local authorities to ensure that one of our most important tourism assets is protected.”

    The Minister also said that this was merely the start of a campaign which would see his Department engage with the EPA, local authorities, the NRA and the public to tackle the menace of litter in Ireland. “While the most recent results of my Department’s National Litter Pollution Monitoring System, and those of Irish Business against Litter, show that there has been a huge improvement in litter levels in this country over the last 10 years, I want to drive home the importance of responsible behaviour in relation to litter. I know that local authorities are doing their best to tackle the litter problem on the ground but we must develop a more responsible public attitude towards litter”. The Minister said IBAL, and Dr. Tom Cavanagh in particular, had made a very significant contribution to raising the awareness of the issue of litter and its impact on the economy.

    Minister Gormley said that the campaign would encompass enforcement of litter legislation, awareness raising and clean-ups. “In particular, I want to see our scenic rural areas protected from the blight of littering and illegal dumping. It will require a combined effort by all the relevant agencies, local communities and groups such as IBAL.”

    Responding to concerns expressed by IBAL in relation to gum litter, the Minister said some progress had been made where anti-gum litter campaigns had been run by the Gum Litter Taskforce, part of his previous agreement with the industry. However, he said he remained concerned at the levels of gum litter and has not yet renewed the agreement. “I am considering a number of approaches to tackle the problem and have sought additional information from the industry. I have not ruled out the option of a levy on gum, but I want to see if the industry is capable of addressing the issue without the necessity to be regulated.”

    2010 Anti-Litter Support Grant Schedule

    County Council 2010 Allocations
    Carlow 10,000
    Cavan 10,000
    Clare 15,000
    Cork 20,000
    Donegal 20,000
    Dun Laoghaire/ Rathdown 20,000
    Fingal 20,000
    Galway 20,000
    Kerry 20,000
    Kildare 20,000
    Kilkenny 10,000
    Laois 10,000
    Leitrim 10,000
    Limerick 15,000
    Longford 10,000
    Louth 15,000
    Mayo 15,000
    Meath 20,000
    Monaghan 10,000
    Offaly 10,000
    Roscommon 10,000
    Sligo 10,000
    South County Dublin 20,000
    South Tipperary 10,000
    North Tipperary 10,000
    Waterford 10,000
    Westmeath 10,000
    Wexford 15,000
    Wicklow 15,000
    City Council
    Cork 20,000
    Dublin 20,000
    Galway 20,000
    Limerick 15,000
    Waterford 15,000
    Total €500,000

    2010 Anti-Litter & Anti-Graffiti Awareness Grant Schedule

    County Council 2010 Allocations
    Carlow 22,000
    Cavan 22,000
    Clare 27,000
    Cork 40,000
    Donegal 30,000
    Dun Laoghaire/ Rathdown 38,000
    Fingal 40,000
    Galway 30,000
    Kerry 30,000
    Kildare 27,000
    Kilkenny 27,000
    Laois 22,000
    Leitrim 19,000
    Limerick 30,000
    Longford 19,000
    Louth 27,000
    Mayo 27,000
    Meath 30,000
    Monaghan 22,000
    Offaly 22,000
    Roscommon 22,000
    Sligo 22,000
    South County Dublin 40,000
    South Tipperary 23,000
    North Tipperary 22,000
    Waterford 19,000
    Westmeath 23,000
    Wexford 30,000
    Wicklow 27,000
    City Council
    Cork 38,000
    Dublin 75,000
    Galway 38,000
    Limerick 35,000
    Waterford 35,000
    Total €1,000,000

    The anti-litter support grants are intended to assist local authorities, during the peak summer period (May-September), in their efforts to clean up key tourist destinations, such as beaches and known scenic areas, approach roads to and from points of access to the country e.g. airports, ferry terminals, and litter in rural areas generally.

    The awareness grants to city and county councils cover a broad range of measures to raise public awareness and promote anti-litter and anti-graffiti activity at local level. Typically, eligible projects include local media campaigns, community clean-ups, primary/secondary school competitions, exhibitions and the production of videos, posters and leaflets. There is a particular focus on involving schools and young people and on voluntary initiatives carried out by community groups. The Department makes a maximum grant for a project of up to 70% of the total cost, with the balance being met by way of local contribution

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