Saturday 21 October 2017

Awareness campaigns to be 'stepped up' next week as Government looks to quell backlash over bin charges

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Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Awareness campaigns aimed at encourage people to reduce waste and recycle will be "stepped up" next week as the Government seek to quell disquiet over changes to the bin charges regime.

Environment Minister Denis Naughten sought to reassure member of Fine Gael at a private party meeting tonight where he said a pay-by-weight system had to be introduced.

It was Mr Naughten's first time at a Fine Gael meeting since he lost the party whip in 2011 and he was first non-Fine Gael minister to address an internal meeting.

In a bid to convince TDs and senators to back his plan despite raging controversy over the likely rise in charges, he emphasised the over reliance on landfills and incinerators.

The Roscommon TD told them Ireland is facing a situation where the country will have nowhere to take our waste by 2020 if we continue at current rates.

An awareness campaign aimed at encouraging people to use their brown bins for food waste will begin next week.

The meeting also heard that some TDs from Sinn Fein and Solidarity-PBP  who were opposed to Government plans on the issue were absent from the Dail to call a vote yesterday.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said the Government and Fine Gael's priority was consumers and not the bin companies. He promised a close eye will be kept on the situation into the future.

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