Litter black spot in Dublin's north city
Dublin’s north inner city remains the only significant litter spot in the State, according to the Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) alliance.
A survey from the group of companies, now in its 16th year, has given towns and urban areas in general a glowing report. More than 80 per cent of towns are as clean or cleaner than the European average, according to the 2012 IBAL litter survey.
The winner of Ireland’s cleanest town will be picked from a shortlist of three towns – Cavan, Kilkenny and Killarney – today.
Only seven towns or urban areas are below the average, among them Dublin’s north inner city, which has again been branded a litter black spot.
The area is north of Connolly Station towards Croke Park and includes Dorset Street, Sheriff Street and Spencer Dock but not O’Connell Street or Parnell Square.
IBAL chairman Tom Cavanagh blamed absentee landlords and local property owners such as Nama and Iarnród Éireann for the litter problem in that part of the inner city.
“On the one hand we have derelict buildings whose landlords are nowhere to be seen and so cannot be held to account for the surrounding litter and dumping,” he said.
“On the other we have State-owned property owners who are just not fulfilling their obligations under the Litter Pollution Acts to keep the areas outside and within their premises free of litter.
“The payback in terms of Dublin being a clean city for both residents and visitors will be undeniable. The area we are talking about is overlooked by the IFSC, which accounts for 8 per cent of our GDP.”
He said cleanliness on Irish streets was the new norm. The survey takes account of all urban areas with a population above 6,000 and is carried out by An Taisce for IBAL.
Dr Kavanagh said the Republic was now “way ahead of Britain” and that half the places surveyed were also above the European average for cleanliness.
“Ten years ago we could not have imagined that over half our towns would be cleaner than their European counterparts,” he said.
The area around Dublin Airport was singled out for particular praise. It was previously a litter black spot, but is now “clean to European norms” thanks to a campaign by Fingal County Council and local residents.
Some 22 cities and towns out of 42 surveyed by An Taisce were deemed “cleaner than European norms”, with a further 13 “clean to European norms”.
The places classified as moderately littered were Cork city, Dundalk, Limerick city, Carlow, Dublin city and Maynooth.
Cork’s Kent station was the best kept station in the State while Mullingar had the cleanest bus station.