Watters: Cross Border Action on Waste is Needed

Cllrs Mickey Larkin & Antóin Watters

Sinn Féin Councillor Antóin Watters has welcomed the motion before Newry Mourne & Down District Council (NMDDC) by his Sinn Féin colleague Mickey Larkin.

Cllr Watters who has been to the forefront of the issue said “fly tipping and dumping of toxic materials like tyres and building rubble is a scourge that we can’t ignore. This motion urges greater cooperation between the NMDDC and Louth County Council (LCC). This scourge is relentless and is blighting the Cooley, Mourne and Gullion regions.”

Cllr Watters said “the Slieve Gullion area has the highest level of fly-tipping in the North and I would go as far as to say Cooley and North Louth possibly have one of the highest levels in the South. Because of this, Cllr Mickey Larkin and I have been working closely together on this in an effort to tackle this issue which is a drain on the tax payers finances. Be under no illusion, it is you and I, the average tax payer, who are picking up the tab for these criminals who have no regard for our communities or countryside.”

The Motion by NMDDC mirrors a similar one brought by Cllr Watters to LCC.

Copy of Cllr Mickey Larkin’s Motion

Cllr Watters said “the motion is calling for increased cooperation between NMDDC and Louth County Council in an effort to tackle the issue.  It is also calling for a review of penalties for dumping to reflect the increasing costs to the Council and Rate Payers of the Council district.”

Further actions agreed by the Councillors in NMDDC were:

  • the Council contacting both Louth County Council and Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Council with a view to addressing fly tipping in a unified way;
  • addressing enforcement action in conjunction with the NIEA (Northern Ireland Environment Agency)
  • to carry out a fly tipping review and market the message of zero tolerance
  • to write to the relevant Department raising concerns and requesting prompt action.”

Cllr Watters concluded by saying “we can not let this continue. We need a joined up and multi-agency approach on this issue and make sure that the ordinary citizens are aware of their responsibility in waste disposal. The polluters are the ones who should be made pay, not the ordinary public.”