Fianna Fáil TD and Spokesperson for Dublin, John Lahart has raised his concern regarding Dublin’s deteriorating litter problem which is affecting large areas of the city.

The Tallaght based Deputy said, “Dublin’s rubbish problems have significantly worsened over recent months and there has been a stark rise in the level of litter across our city and county.

“In 2014 the local authority spent almost €700,000 on the removal and disposal of illegally dumped bags alone, yet these bags amount to less than 5% of the litter on Dublin streets.

“Those deliberately and covertly disposing of their rubbish illegally are becoming a big problem in our communities particularly on derelict sites across the city. Fines are just one way of managing litter black spots in urban areas and in 2014 almost 1,700 fines were issued but only 575 were paid.

“It is believed that over 100 complaints for cases of illegal dumping were reported to South Dublin County Council last year. Frustratingly, it is proving extremely difficult to obtain evidence to take further action in relation to identifying those carrying out any illegal dumping.

“In a survey carried out by An Taisce on behalf of Irish Business against Litter, inspectors deemed the North Inner City in particular, seriously littered. The cost of illegal dumping places an unfair burden on the taxpayer which is only set to increase. In the longer term, if we do not address this ongoing issue it will eventually begin to impact heavily on local authority budgets and our economy as a whole.
“All the while, dog fouling and cigarette butts continue to be matters of public health concern that affect families and the broader environment,” he explained.

“Tourism Ireland continues to exceed ambitious year-on-year targets to increase the number of tourists visiting the capital. We must take greater pride in our surroundings and add illegal dumping higher on the political agenda in need of a solution.

“Over the coming weeks, I will be questioning the Minister for Local Government on what added measures are required to tackle the rising litter problem.

“We have witnessed increased efforts from authorities in cracking down on illegal dumping but we must all consciously contribute towards achieving a more sustained improvement. There is an onus of each of us to encourage residents and the public at large to appropriately dispose of waste in our homes, in our workplace and on our streets,” concluded the Deputy.