Thursday, September 07, 2017

CARLOW has moved up the table in the Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) league.

The latest survey placed Carlow in 18th position, an improvement from its 25th placing in January.

The IBAL report indicated that Carlow had no litter blackspots or heavily-littered sites. The report stated: “Carlow Town Park presented very well and was one of many top-ranking sites in Carlow. The vacant/derelict site on Barrack Street could easily have become a magnet for litter, but clearly a careful eye is kept on it, as it was clear of same. Other top-ranking sites include Carlow Shopping Centre, the residential area of Rochfort Manor and all approach roads leading to the town.”

IBAL did voice concern about the recycling facility at Carlow Shopping Centre as potentially becoming a heavily-littered site. However, this facility was removed by the council over a month ago.

Carlow County Council’s environment officer Jannette O’Brien outlined the amount of work that goes into keeping Carlow clean and stressed it was a community effort.

“There are a lot of agencies involved – us, FAS’s great CE scheme and Tús workers. IBAL provides a good focus for us. There is a lot of voluntary work in the community as well, and awareness from businesses and people. Carlow Shopping Centre is a business. Despite incidents in the town park, it also got a good mark and Rochfort Manor is an estate where the residents are doing the work. It’s not just one organisation.”

John Boyd, secretary of Carlow Tidy Towns, said the group was delighted that the points had gone up.

“We are doing a lot of litter picking around the town with Tús workers. I thought, alright, it was a bit cleaner over the last six months but it’s hard to keep it that way.”

However, several challenges faced the various groups. Vandalism is an issue in keeping the town picture-perfect and Mr Boyd regretted the destruction of planters at the town hall a month ago and that the vandals had not yet been identified.

Council staff also frequently empty the same public bins several times a day, as they become filled with household waste. “This means that staff have to waste their time maybe up to four times a day at these bins, when they could be doing something more constructive,” said Ms O’Brien. “It’s all about everyone playing their part.”

Carlow County Council, Love Carlow and the Carlow Volunteer Centre are organising a big clean-up of Carlow town on Saturday 16 September along with an upcoming litter campaign.

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By Michael Tracey
Contact Newsdesk: +353 59 9170100

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