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The government is going to use drones to crack down on illegal dumping

Local authorities and community groups can now apply for funding under the initiative.

File photo
File photo
Image: Shutterstock/Aunging

THE GOVERNMENT IS increasing funding for drone, satellite and surveillance technology to try to stop people from illegally dumping rubbish.

Calling it ‘economic and environmental treason’, Minister for Environment Denis Naughten is allocating €2 million for a targeted crackdown on illegal dumping blackspot across the country.

The Minister says covert surveillance, drones, satellites and CCTV cameras will form a central part of the crackdown, with prosecution for those caught.

He says that last year’s campaign removed over 2.8 thousand tonnes of waste from public and private lands, beaches, walking routes and residential areas.

This year’s Anti-Illegal Dumping Initiative was launched by Minister Naughten and Minister of Rural and Community Development Michael Ring and is an increase from the €1.3 million spent last year.

Local authorities and community groups can now apply for funding under the initiative.

Minister Naughten added:

Ireland is fighting back and reclaiming our rivers, beaches, parks and walkways from illegal dumpers. The response to last year’s anti-dumping initiative from the public and local authorities was unprecedented.

He said that unauthorised bogus waste collectors and ‘man with a van’ operations advertising on the internet or through leaflets will also be targeted and he advised that householders should always ask to see a permit before engaging with any bulky waste disposal operators.

Applications for funding are being invited from local authorities for consideration by the relevant waste enforcement local authority and the selection criteria.

Funding will also continue to be made available to support enforcement personnel in accessing the latest ICT enforcement tools.

Minister Naughten said:

Local communities were central to the success of the Anti-Dumping Initiative last year and they will be again this year.

These communities are the backbone of our counties and they are also victims, reporters, witnesses and partners in the clean-up and control of sites that are targeted by fly-tippers.”

Read: ‘Prosecutions for illegal dumping expected after covert CCTV operations in Wicklow and Dublin’

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