Digital tracking ‘could solve illegal dumping’

Calls for digitial waste tracking to prevent dumpingCalls for digitial waste tracking to prevent dumping
Calls for digitial waste tracking to prevent dumping
Digital waste tracking could help solve Northern Ireland’s illegal dumping problem which, according to a Green Party councillor, is among the worst in Europe and is costing tens of millions of pounds.

The measure could also help tackle fatal litter swallowing by rural livestock, it was also claimed.

The assertions were made by Green Party councillor Simon Lee as he outlined his support for a multi-million pound UK wide waste programme at this week’s meeting of Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council’s environment committee.

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Mr Lee raised concerns of a repeat of the ecological disaster at Mobouy Road outside Londonderry in 2015, when the clean up operation of 1.2m tonnes of illegally dumped waste was estimated by Green Peace at over £100m.

“We have some of the most significant illegal dumping in Europe which has led to astronomical clean up costs in the tens of millions of pounds, as seen in Foyle,” said Cllr Lee.

The localisation of environmental concerns in LCCC has seen Belfast City Council putting pressure on the local authority to cease using its Mullaghglass landfill for domestic waste.

The LCCC site, on the outskirts of West Belfast, was listed to closed to domestic waste in January, though the council kicked the proverbial waste can down the road to an extended closure date of October this year, amid ongoing complaints from local residents about bad smells.

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“We do need to do this (digital waste tracking) even though there will be additional costs. We are responsible for waste disposal. The question is how far down the road would the tracking go?

“Would it be as far as the Netherlands?” questioned Cllr Lee.

LCCC’s head of waste operations services, Wilfie Muldrew reminded all councillors of the need to contribute to the consultation, which had been sent out from early February.

The consultation period for a future digital waste tracking system ends on April 15.