National Spring Clean 2018

National Spring Clean 2018 From Left to Right: Martin McCrann, Litter Warden; Ciarán Hayes, Chief Executive; Sarah McGovern-Vaughan, National Spring Clean; Councillor Marie Casserly; Councillor Rosaleen O’Grady; Siobhan Gillen, Administrative Officer; Councillor Jerry Lundy; Cathaoirleach Councillor Seamus Kilgannon; Pete Murtagh, Environmental Awareness Officer; James McGowan, Bottle Bank Caretaker; Brian Courtney, Litter Warden; Tom Kilfeather, Director of Services; Fineen O’Driscoll, Senior Engineer

Spring is in the air, and therefore local communities all around Ireland are, once again, gearing up and getting their gloves on for the National Spring Clean.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of this very successful National initiative, where volunteers from every town and village sweep through their locality and pick up the rubbish and litter that has accumulated over the last year.

National Spring Clean has been operated by An Taisce since 1999, in partnership with Local Authorities and the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment.  The event is also sponsored by the Wrigley Company Ltd.

In 2017 there were well over 5000 events nationwide, with over half a million people participating!  Over 2500 tonnes of waste was collected with a third of this being sent for recycling rather than for disposal.

Here in Sligo, several experienced groups are already signed up and are ready for action.  Registration is very straightforward and can be done online or by post.  Once registered, An Taisce will arrange to have the NSC kits sent out to each group.

Equipment packs which include gloves, tabards and bags for recyclable and non-recyclable waste will be distributed to all registered groups by An Taisce once the registrations are complete.  The packs also contain information on how to organise an event, health & safety, useful contact details and litter facts, as well as advice about media and publicity.

Local Spring Cleans will be carried out all through the month of April and all of the waste picked up by the volunteers will be collected and disposed of by the Local Authority.

Without the massive efforts of these conscientious men, women and children, our streets and roads, fields and laneways would be an awful lot worse than they are once they’ve seen the National Spring Clean sweep through them.

It is a shame that some people continue to think that it is ok to dispose of their waste irresponsibly, and that others have to clean up their mess.  Littering is illegal and can attract On the Spot fines of €150, while larger scale dumping can see fines of up to €3000 imposed by the Courts.

But with the continued efforts of people throughout our communities, together we can show the litter bugs and dumpers that the rest of us don’t think that it is acceptable, and that we want to live in a clean and litter free environment.

For further information please go to www.nationalspringclean.org or contact the Environment Section of Sligo County Council.