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Bottle refill stations introduced along Waterford Greenway to reduce plastic waste

The Mayor of Waterford City and County Council, Councillor John Pratt has launched water bottle refill stations on the Waterford Greenway. These stations are now located along the Greenway at Abbeyside, Ballylynch Cross, Kilmacthomas Station and Bilberry to enable Greenway users to refill their water bottles as they enjoy the Waterford Greenway.

The refill stations were funded under the Local Authority Prevention Network, which works to prevent waste in Ireland and were supplied by www.ecofil.ie

Waterford City & County Mayor, Cllr. John Pratt refilling his reusable water bottle at the water bottle refill station on Waterford Greenway at Abbeyside. Included are Michael Lucey & Raymond Moloney, Environment Department, WCCC, Gemma Power & Aoife Power, Dungarvan Tidy Towns.
Waterford City & County Mayor, Cllr. John Pratt depositing a plastic bottle for recycling in the new plastic bottle recycling bin on Waterford Greenway at Abbeyside. Included are Gemma Power & Aoife Power, Dungarvan Tidy Towns and Raymond Moloney & Michael Lucey, Environment department, WCCC.

Speaking at the launch in Abbeyside, Mayor of Waterford City and County Council, Councillor John Pratt said “I am delighted to see these water bottle refilling stations installed at four locations along the Greenway. With over 70 million plastic bottles sold in Ireland every year, single use plastic water bottles account for a large proportion of waste and the installation of these bottle refill stations will help to prevent this.”

“It is important to make an effort to reduce the amount of single use plastic bottles used. These bottles also represent a significant amount of litter in our beautiful county. In fact, over 80 per cent of all coastal sites surveyed during CoastWatch’s most recent All-Ireland CoastWatch Survey were found to be littered with plastic. The surveyors found an astonishing average of 18 plastic bottles for every 500 metres of the coastline.”

Plastic bottles recycling bins were also launched on the day.  These bins which were an initiative of Tramore Tidy Towns were trialled on the Promenade in Tramore last year and proved so successful in segregating plastic bottles that they have been introduced at four additional locations; Kilbarry Nature Park, The People’s Park in Waterford and Abbeyside, as well as a second location on the Prom in Tramore.  The bins were manufactured locally in Dungarvan by Coffey Engineering.

“Ireland is currently recycling only 35 per cent of its plastic waste, with the rest going to landfill, incineration or thrown away carelessly on our streets and into our hedgerows, waterways, and seas” stated the Mayor. “The Greenway is a popular route for cyclists, runners and walkers so these stations are a valuable amenity which benefits County Waterford’s environment as well as health. We are working to keep it litter free and these plastic bottle bins will encourage more plastic bottles to be taken out of the general waste stream to be sent for recycling.”

Reminder: Community Clean Up Grant available

Waterford City & County Council invites submissions from community groups or other community development organisations based in County Waterford, who are interested in receiving funding for a once off Community Clean Up Grant  of €500.

A grant of €500 will be made available to ten community groups who can clean up a local area this summer. Before, during and after photographs must be provided before payment can be made. Closing date for entries is 1st July 2019 at 5pm.

This grant is funded under the national Anti-Dumping Initiative 2019. 

Community Clean Up Grant available

Waterford City & County Council invites submissions from community groups or other community development organisations based in County Waterford, who are interested in receiving funding for a once off Community Clean Up Grant  of €500.

A grant of €500 will be made available to ten community groups who can clean up a local area this summer. Before, during and after photographs must be provided before payment can be made. Closing date for entries is 1st July 2019 at 5pm.

This grant is funded under the national Anti-Dumping Initiative 2019. 

Mayor of Waterford launches the Spick and Span Awards 2019

Mayor of Waterford City and County Council, Cllr Declan Doocey launches the Spick and Span Awards 2019

Applications to enter the Waterford City and County Council Spick and Span Awards 2019 will open from the 1st June to the 21st June. Residents associations and community groups in local authority housing estates are now invited to register. The judging will take place between the 8th July and the 5th August.

The Waterford City and County Council Spick and Span Awards is a competition to acknowledge the selfless work done by individuals, residents associations and communities that go to great lengths to improve and enhance their estates by keeping them clean and well presented.

Application forms are available at Waterford City and County Council Customer Service desks at Baileys New Street, Waterford City or the Civic Offices Dungarvan. Alternatively you can register online at waterfordcouncil.ie.

The Waterford City and County Council Spick and Span Awards categories will be judged on an area basis, with winning entrants from each of the council administrative areas. The ultimate aim of the competition is to achieve a cleaner, greener environment and attractively presented estates and open areas that will benefit all residents and visitors to their areas.

Spot check judging will take place throughout judging period (8th July – 5th August), with a final decision on the 17th August 2019.  There will be a family fun day held for all the estate entries and their residents, to present awards and as a thank you for all who took part!

The initiative will be actively supported by Waterford City & County Council, further information on judging criteria and available supports will be supplied to all entrants.

To enter, fill out this form: http://bit.ly/Spick-SpanAwards2019

ENDS

For further information contact:

Estate Management Team
Tel: 0761 10 20 20
Email: contact@waterfordcouncil.ie

Waterford Council marks National Tree Week

NATIONAL TREE WEEK
Mayor of the City and County of Waterford Cllr. Declan Doocey took part in a tree planting ceremony at St. Saviour’s National School this morning with pupils and staff as part of National Tree Week.

National Tree Week, organised by the Tree Council of Ireland in association with Coillte, is taking place from 31st March – 7th April 2019. Forest and woodland walks, nature trails, workshops, talks and exhibitions are just a small selection of events that are taking place around the country for National Tree Week.

For more information on events taking place around Co. Waterford, please visit https://treecouncil.ie/waterford

Statement from Council on recent tree felling/pruning

We have received numerous calls from Councillors and the general public recently regarding the removal of trees adjacent to Devonshire Bridge, Dungarvan.

Waterford Council sees trees as an integral part of the landscape and the planting of any  tree ultimately adds and enhances the landscape. The main considerations for selecting a tree can very often be made on broad principles or within much more objective measures such as  native selection; contribution to the landscape; fitting  for its environment and biodiversity contribution to mention a few.

The trees planted at Devonshire Bridge, and are subsequently now removed, have raised questions as to whether the above rationale was applied or not.  The trees removed were one number Cherry; one number Sorbus and two number Cordylines.

The Cherry tree was dead and required removal and the Sorbus for the greatest part was dead and would ultimately fail this growing season. The Cordylines native to New Zealand have been a hugely popular planting choice for sea side locations planted through the 80’s and 90’s purely due to the fact of their ability to tolerate sea exposure. This was generally the only fundamental reason for selection and largely bypassing the points raised above.

The two Cordylines were removed to create the opportunity to enhance the landscape adjacent to the bridge. This now in turn creates a canvas for which we can make an added improvement where the space can now be planted with a much more suitable and iconic selection through the planting of Arbutus unedo –  strawberry tree. This is a native Irish tree which would greatly contribute to this area and provide a biodiversity aspect to this location.

Waterford City & County Council’s primary objective in relation to the maintenance and management of the trees within our city and county is to ultimately improve and create a safer healthier tree population.  Trees are an integral part of the landscape and make a major contribution to the character and appearance of Waterford. However, the Council recognises trees are a living asset and require maintenance and this maintenance is to ensure public safety and minimise hazards posed by trees. The type of tree work undertaken by the Council largely depends on a trees location and its species. However the broad spectrum of our works is underpinned by the following:

  • the health of the tree, i.e. the tree is dead or visibly in decline;
  • road signs, traffic signals, street lights, and sight-lines for vehicles and pedestrians are obscured by the tree
  • if the tree is a contributing factor in causing structural damage, particularly to roads and footpaths, that cannot be reasonably addressed by an alternative solution.

In the recent weeks and months, as in previous years, Waterford City and County Council has removed a number of trees across the city and county and pruned many more for the reasons identified above.  In the majority of instances, residents living adjacent to these trees highlighted their concerns to the Council and acknowledging where the item requires attention, the Council has taken corrective action.

The Wildlife Act 1976 (as amended 2000) is the principle legislation protecting nesting birds in Ireland. This Act, under Section 40, prohibits cutting of vegetation on uncultivated land between March 1st and August 31st. However, it is accepted in practice that street or urban trees are cultivated and this allows for tree maintenance works to be carried out during the closed period subject to best practice protocols in regard to pre-works assessment of trees for active nests or nesting birds and having regard to the initial issue in need of addressing.

Another key element of the Council’s tree maintenance programme is an annual tree planting programme and promotion of our National Tree Week. In 2018, the Council distributed 300 trees supplied by the Tree Council of Ireland to various Tidy Towns and Residents Associations and this was supplemented with 100 trees provided by Waterford City & County Council.

Year on year an annual tree planting programme is implemented across the city and county by the Council where trees are selected based on suitability for each location.  All trees planted by the Council are carefully grown through their formative years within a tree nursery bringing them to a developed stage at which they can be successfully transplanted into these various locations. These same trees across our city and county will become more identifiable in the coming weeks when they come into full leaf.

We can also confirm that 5G was not a consideration in the removal of any trees in Waterford, nor are we aware of, nor have we any involvement in, any 5G rollout in Waterford.

Celebrate World Wetlands Day on Saturday 2nd Feb at the Anne Valley

Come along on Saturday February 2nd at 11 am for a guided walk along the wonderful  Anne Valley Wetlands.

Well known naturalist and wildlife photographer Paddy Dwan will explain the value of wetlands and show you how to be  a wildlife detective along the route – who knows what he may find!

Meet at the Anne Valley Car Park in Dunhill at 11 a.m. This event is being organised by Waterford City& County Council as part of the Irish Ramsar Committee’s celebration of World Wetlands Day. Find out more on  www.irishwetlands.ie

Waterford City and Tramore selected as ‘Think Before You Flush’ communities

Clean Coasts and Irish Water select Waterford City and Tramore as ‘Think Before You Flush’ communities as Irish Water reveals 4,600 sewer blockages across the country this year

October 18th, 2018 – Waterford City and Tramore have been chosen along with 13 other cities and towns as a Think Before You Flush Community. Clean Coasts together with Irish Water are launching the third year of the Think Before You Flush campaign as the utility reveals that there has been an estimated 4,600 sewer blockages this year due to inappropriate items being flushed down toilets.

When the 3 Ps (pee, poo and paper) are flushed down the toilet they travel along the sewer network to wastewater treatment plants. However, every day people flush thousands of items such as wet wipes, cotton bud sticks, nappies and cotton wool pads down the toilet instead of putting them in a bin. Flushing these items can have a negative impact on internal plumbing in homes and businesses, the wastewater network and our marine environment.

Think Before You Flush Communities
Waterford City and Tramore have been selected to become Think Before You Flush Communities. Clean Coasts together with Irish Water will be delivering educational workshops in schools, promoting the campaign at festivals and community events and working with businesses to help raise awareness and provide advice.

The 13 other Think Before You Flush Communities are; Blackrock, Co. Louth, Navan, Co. Meath, Maynooth, Co. Kildare, Tullamore, Co. Offaly, Cork City, Dunmanway, Co. Cork, Bantry, Co. Cork, Dublin City, Galway city, Ahascraugh, Co. Galway, Srandhill, Co. Sligo, Bellmullet, Co. Mayo, and Bundoran, Co. Donegal.

Speaking about the campaign, Niall O’Riordan, Irish Water said, “Irish Water is delighted to partner with Clean Coasts on this important educational campaign. We estimate that there have been over 4,600 sewer blockages this year already nationwide. Illegal disposal of material down the sewers is also a major concern for us. For example in Waterford City and Tramore there are a number of large sewage pumping stations. It is noticeable that there has been an increase in the number of pump failures and sewer blockages in both Waterford City and Tramore. On investigation, it was found there was a large volume of non-biodegradable material being flushed into the public sewers, for example wet wipes, baby wipes, sanitary products, etc.

When blockages happen, the contents of our sewer network can end up in rivers and on beaches. This causes pollution that kills fish and other wildlife. Within the pumping stations the wipes and sanitary products causes motors to burn out, leading to costly repairs.”

He added: “through education and awareness we can change people’s flushing behaviour so that together we can protect the environment and our wastewater infrastructure. It is very important that we do not flush baby wipes, wet wipes and sanitary products down our toilets.”

Speaking about the campaign; Sinead Mc Coy, Clean Coasts Manager added, “Sewage related litter is one of the categories of waste we find on our beaches. However its presence is preventable through some simple measures. Through this campaign we are working with Irish Water to change the nation’s flushing behaviour which will make a difference to our coastal environment.”

For more information about ‘Think Before You Flush’ please visit www.thinkbeforyouflush.org

Ends

For media queries

Irish Water please contact press@water.ie 0871458896

Clean Coasts please contact 01 4002200

There are a number of educational animations relating to the Think Before You Flush campaign available on the Clean Coasts Youtube channel

IBAL Litter survey results released for Waterford

The most recent survey of litter levels in Ireland by Irish Business Against Litter has resulted in Waterford City Centre and Ballybeg both improving their rankings.

Waterford City Centre is deemed to be ‘Cleaner than European Norms’ in 10th place and Ballybeg improved its ranking to 21st out of 40 towns and cities, retaining it ‘Clean to European Norms’ status.

While Ireland’s towns and city centres are clean, disadvantaged areas of our cities are suffering increasing levels of litter. This is the finding of the latest survey by business group Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL).

Fermoy in Cork was the cleanest of the 40 towns and cities surveyed, but pockets of Galway, Dublin and Cork city were more heavily littered than in previous surveys. IBAL sees more mixed housing as the long-term solution to our urban litter problem.

An Taisce assessed litter levels over the summer months on behalf of IBAL. 77% of towns and cities were found to be clean. None was deemed a litter blackspot, but five were ‘littered’ or ‘seriously littered’ and scored worse than last year.

“We have seen a worsening of litter levels in economically disadvantaged areas, which dominate the lower placings of our rankings,” says Conor Horgan of IBAL. “What is often lacking in these areas is a sense of ‘pride in place’, which in turn reflects an absence of real community. In the frenzy to address our housing shortage, we must be mindful of the need to build communities along with houses. Mixed housing is the long-term solution to our urban litter problem.”

Mayor launches waste prevention initiative at Council Meeting

On Thursday 11th October, Mayor of Waterford City & County, Cllr. Declan Doocey launched an initiative that sees Waterford City and County Council move away from the use of plastic bottles at all Council meetings.

Councillors and Council staff have instead switched to reusable environmentally friendly jugs and glasses at these meetings. The announcement comes during National Reuse Month, which encourages the reuse of everyday items for as long and as often as possible. It also asks us to consider alternative options to buying new items that we may only use once, which opens up the possibility of borrowing, re-purposing or purchasing good quality reused goods.

Launching the initiative at Civic Offices in Dungarvan,  Mayor Doocey said “I welcome this initiative for Council meetings in both Waterford and Dungarvan. We are very aware that reducing dependency on disposable items such as plastic bottles is vital for our environment and would encourage other organisations and businesses across Waterford City and County to carry out similar projects to reduce their use of single use plastics. Preventing waste is a key part of managing waste in our environment and we are happy to play our part in this.”

“Plastic Oceans” – Environmental track released by Riptide Movement

October 2018 is “Reuse Month”.  National Reuse Month aims to inspire you and provide you with the skills and tools to reuse more At Home, At Work, and At Play.

The Riptide Movement recently worked with Clean Coasts Ireland and released a single entitled ‘Plastic Oceans’. The track aims to spread the serious environmental message that our beaches, coastlines, rivers, cities and towns need to be kept litter and plastic free if society is to help prevent our oceans from becoming more polluted.

Check out what they had to say about plastics in our oceans.

You can make a difference to the amount of plastic in our oceans by reusing items instead of throwing away plastic items after just one use.

South East LCDCs launch regional Tobacco Free Action Campaign

On Thursday 27th September, the Local Community Development Committees of Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Wexford and Waterford will collectively launch a Tobacco Free Positive Message Campaign across the region. This campaign is a direct outcome of partnership working between the Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs), the HSE, Health and Wellbeing, Youth Reach and Youth Services from across the south east and is funded under Healthy Ireland Strand 1 funding.  The regional tobacco free action sets out to increase awareness and knowledge of the benefits of being tobacco free through the provision of training and a positive message campaign with young people from across the region.  

The positive message campaign provides information about how to QUIT, what support is available, how to access support www.QUIT.ie and the rewards of quitting. The overall positive message campaign includes XHale training which was provided by the Irish Cancer Society and was completed by participants and staff in youth reach and out of school settings. This training provides participants with the skills, confidence and materials they need to tackle smoking issues in their youth setting and provides a framework for facilitating a broad range of smoking prevention sessions in an engaging and empowering way with young people.   In addition, young people also participated in the Irish Cancer Society Xhale media training programme. Youth organisations from across the region produced tobacco free videos which were showcased at the XHale media awards in the Helix Dublin on July 5th and will also be showcased at the regional tobacco free launch on September 27th.

The positive message campaign set out to move away from the traditional no smoking messages to messages which includes ‘you can achieve’, ‘take the first steps to a healthier life’, and ‘reach out for help’.

The development of a stencil using the message “Reach out for Help’ aims to reinforce the positive message of being tobacco free and is intended to be used across the 5 counties on the same day on key dates throughout the year.  Within each county, participating partners are being invited to participate in the stencil campaign and are asked to use the stencil to display this positive message using spray paint on 27th September 2018, and annually thereafter on Ash Wednesday, World No Tobacco day on May 31st and again on 1st October. 

Cllr John O’Leary, Deputy Mayor, Waterford City & County Council, welcomed this initiative, thanked all those organisations involved and congratulated all the young people who engaged with the “We Can Quit” programme.

Dr. Derval Howley (Head of Service, Health and Wellbeing South East Community Healthcare) said the Health services across the south east were delighted to be working closely with the Local Community Development Committees in Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Waterford, and Wexford and youth services from across the region to promote the importance of being tobacco free.

Participating locations in each county include local civic offices, public libraries, the Waterford Greenway, public parks, primary care and HSE facilities, secondary and third level education providers, sports facilities and youth services across the region. The launch of the Positive Message campaign will take place across the South East on Thursday 27th of September at the following locations:

Carlow                   Town Hall, Carlow                                                      3pm

Kilkenny                The Watershed, Kilkenny                                         11am

Tipperary              Primary Care Centre, Tipperary Town                  11am

Waterford             WIT Sports Arena, Carraiganore                            11am

Wexford                FDYS Island Road Enniscorthy                                4pm

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