Laois and Offaly councils urged to apply for funds to tackle Covid-19 dumping upsurge

Conor Ganly


Conor Ganly

coronavirus covid-19

Rubbish dumped in the wheelie bins paid for by Durrow Meals on Wheels

Some €1 million in funding will be given to local authorities to combat a worrying rise in illegal dumping during the Covid-19 emergency, according to Laois Offaly TD and Minister for Justice & Equality, Charlie Flanagan.

He said the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment has developed an Anti-Dumping Initiative to work in partnership with Laois & Offaly County Councils and community organisations in developing appropriate enforcement responses and carrying out clean-up operations across the counties.

“Since the outbreak of the Covid-19 crisis, there has been a reported rise in illegal dumping, particularly as people clean out their houses and sheds and are using recycling banks more frequently during the pandemic.

“There are many environmental problems and health risks caused by illegal dumping and it is everyone’s responsibility to ensure waste is disposed of in the correct fashion.

“Laois & Offaly County Councils can apply for funding from the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment until May 4th for its enforcement operations and I would strongly encourage it to do so,” said Minister Flanagan.

In a statement, he added that waste removal and the installation of CCTV or other monitoring and surveillance equipment will be among the activities supported with funds from the Anti-Dumping initiative.

The Fine Gael TD said that since the introduction of the Anti-Dumping Initiative in 2017, funding of €6.3 million has been provided which has supported over 700 projects across all 31 local authorities and removed 10,000 tonnes of illegally dumped waste. 

He said this is in addition to the €7.4 million annual enforcement grant, which supports the recruitment and retention of 150 local authority waste enforcement personnel across the country.