2 - Environmental Policy

Minutes of Strategic Policy Committee 2 (Environmental Policy) held on Tuesday 22nd June, 2010 at 15:00 in The Meeting Room, Environmental Services Section, Cleveragh Business Park, Sligo


  • Councillor Tony McLoughlin.


  • Councillor Hubert Keaney,
  • Ms. Kathleen Henry,
  • Mr. Brendan Queenan,
  • Mr. Billy Sommerville,
  • Mr. Guy Marsden,
  • Mr. John Cawley,
  • Councillor Marcella McGarry.


  • Ms. Rita McNulty, Director of Service
  • Mr. Fineen O’Driscoll, A/Senior Engineer
  • Mr. Paul Hampson, Senior Executive Engineer
  • Mr. Enda Killoran, A/Assistant Scientist
  • Mr. Pete Murtagh, Waste Enforcement Officer
  • Mr. Conall Calleary, Veterinary Officer
  • Ms. Mairead Scanlon, Assistant Staff Officer
  • Ms.Olivia Black, A/Assistant Staff Officer


  • Councillor Mary Barrett,
  • Councillor David Cawley,
  • Ms. Kathleen McGuinness.

The Chairman welcomed everyone to their first meeting and thanked them for their attendance.



Rita McNulty gave a presentation and a handout on the guidelines.


Fineen O’Driscoll gave a handout out and a short talk Re: EPA Code of Practice:Wastewater Treatment and Disposal Systems serving Single Houses (p.e. < 10).  Hubert Keaney asked if there is an increase in the number of refusals to which Enda Killoran said there is a significant increase in the technical requirements under planning but there has been no major increase in the number of refusals but it has only been operational since January.  Hubert Keaney said the guidelines are very rigid compared to N.Ireland and Fineen O’Driscoll replied policies are made at national level and the EPA regulates the guidelines.

Tony McLoughlin requested a progress report for the next meeting.

Billy Sommerville mentioned Waste Water Treatment and the problem seems to be with septic tanks not functioning properly. He mentioned bleaches and that all other chemicals should be environmentally friendly and some of the chemicals should be banned altogether.  Fineen O’Driscoll said this is a valid point as toilet and sink waste goes into septic tanks.


Fineen O’Driscoll gave an update on the plans.  There was a number of amendments proposed by the Councillors.  The Manager signed it on 14th May 2010.  The plans and amendments have been forwarded to the Minister to sign it into Law by the 1st July 2010. 

Hubert Keaney asked if the previous River Basin Committees will be reconvened to which Fineen O’Driscoll said it is one of the concerns voiced at various council meetings throughout the country.

Billy Sommerville said the IFA is in broad agreement with the plan but not in agreement with the figures.  He also said that trying to farm and spreading slurry according to the calendar causes problems.


Conall Calleary gave an update on problems associated with this beach and in particular highlighted the fact that we could not apply for a Blue Flag because of cattle on the beach. 

Litter Warden

Fineen O’Driscoll said thatAideen Feeneyretired last June and we now have a new Acting/Litter Warden, Cyril Walsh, who joined us at the end of March 2010. 

Tony McLoughlin acknowledged the tremendous work done byAideen Feeneyover the last number of years.  He said she did an excellent job and was more than helpful to Councillors and to members of the public.

Dumping of Dead Animals

Conall mentioned the dumping of dead animals in drains and along bog roads. He asked if the IFA could emphasise to its members the seriousness of this problem.  Billy Sommerville mentioned that a small farm incinerator might suit some farmers or a line pit for small animals.  Conall replied that unless you are in a very remote area i.e. the islands it would not be feasible. 

Stray horses

Conall Calleary gave an update. He said old houses in Tubbercurry are being used as stables. They have had one seizure already and are thinking of organising another. There are big costs involved in this area.

3rd bin

Pete Murtagh gave an update on the 3rd bin, which will mean a major change in Waste Management  for commercial businesses.  From July it will expand throughout the town and county, diverting organic waste from landfill.

At this point of the meeting the Chairman welcomed Cllr Marcella McGarry and John Cawley who joined the meeting.

Hazardous waste

Paul Hampson gave an update. He said it is proposed to have Hazardous waste accepted at the Tubbercurry Civic Amenity Site and it is hoped to have it operational by the last quarter of this year. 


Tony McLoughlin mentioned we could do with a different venue because of the large number of people attending the meeting.

Conall Calleary mentioned the problem with Jet-skis on the Garravogue.  The Irish Water Safety Association have been contacted and they are to carry out a risk assessment study.  The DoEH&LG are going to introduce Regulations to cover areas of amenity.

Fineen O’Driscoll said to the members that if they have any items for inclusion on the Agenda, to contact the Environment Section, in ample time so that any documentation needed could be provided at the meeting. 

Tony McLoughlin thanked all for attending and contributing to the meeting.

The date for the next meeting was set for Tuesday, 21st September 2010 at 15:00


This meeting concluded at 16:00.


Meeting Date 22/06/2010