Waste services and public control


Sir, – If they are serious about tackling fly-tipping and other environmental damage, Denis Naughten and his ministerial colleagues might consider bringing privatised waste services back into public control (“Minister warns of Irish waste sector restructuring”, News, March 22nd).

Impact trade union, which is now part of Fórsa, correctly warned that the 2012 privatisation of Dublin’s waste services would result in more fly-tipping in the city. Since then it has become progressively worse, while taxpayer-funded council staff frequently have to clean up rubbish that private waste collection companies leave behind.

A recent report by the London-based Public Services International Research Group gives examples of privatised waste and refuse services being brought back into public control in places like Paris, Munich and London, because of private operators’ high costs and service shortcomings.

An earlier study by the Amsterdam-based Transnational Institute examined over 800 examples of re-municipalisation of waste, water and other public services across the globe between 2000 and 2017.

Both reports found that privatisation leads to more expensive and less efficient services, as well as poorer working conditions. Publicly operated waste management services – in Dublin and other Irish towns and cities – could also be positive in terms of sustainability and environmental protection. – Yours, etc,


Head of Communications,


Nerney’s Court,

Dublin 1.

Sir, – One word sums up the proposed new recycling charges on the householders of Ireland – “Pandamonium”. – Yours, etc,



Co Dublin.