Monday 17 June 2019

Last year the most successful one to date for Pure Project

Dumped materials collected by the Pure Project
Dumped materials collected by the Pure Project

Deborah Coleman

The past year has proved the most successful yet for the Pure Project with the lowest amount of illegal dumping in the Wicklow/Dublin uplands recorded since the group established in 2006.

In 2017 Pure collected 200 tonnes of rubbish which was a 45 per cent reduction in dumping compared to 10 years before when in 2007 the project removed 360 tonnes.

Based on the data available to date this year, less than 180 tonnes have been collected since January.

'We have been mapping and recording every location and incident of illegal dumping in the Wicklow/Dublin Uplands since 2007 and from this we have built up a base-line-data of all illegal dumping activities in the uplands.

Pure believe that by using a multi-disciplinary approach, incorporating a number of enforcement and preventative measures, covert CCTV operations, media/PR campaigns, public awareness campaigns, community projects, such as the PURE Mile, and educational initiatives, the project has finally seen a marked reduction in illegal dumping in the Wicklow/Dublin Uplands,' says project manager Ian Davis.

A further reason for the reduction in dumping is also attributed to the success of the Pure covert CCTV units which have been deployed at a number of sites in Wicklow.

Footage obtained by the Pure covert CCTV from the various locations in the Wicklow Uplands, clearly shows both littering and dumping, and varies from people emptying the contents of their car boot at a pull in, to examples of large-scale dumping of household rubbish, furniture, electrical goods, at woodland entrances and other remote areas.

The CCTV footage has already resulted in people being issued with litter fines, with one recent case relating to a site which was continually affected by illegal dumping, resulting in a criminal prosecution and large fine.

Further cases that involve large scale illegal dumping which were captured Pure covert CCTV will be brought before the courts next year.

The Pure Covert CCTV Operations are collaboration between Pure, Wicklow County Council, Coillte, and the National Parks and Wildlife Service, and in 2019 Pure will continue to deploy the covert CCTV systems in Wicklow and the project is determined to further reduce illegal dumping in the Garden County of Ireland.

According to Mr Davis, 2018 was the biggest entry year ever for the Pure Mile, with year over 50 communities, groups, scouts, beavers, primary schools, walking groups, cycling groups, businesses and organisations, who collectively improved and enhanced over 220 miles of road, mountains, valleys, forestries, woodlands, upland amenities, and beaches, with the removal of tonnes of illegal dumping and litter from the Wicklow/Dublin Uplands.

The Pure Truck is on the road every day, and since the project began Pure has removed over 3,200 tonnes of rubbish from over 11,000 illegal dumping sites in the Wicklow/Dublin Uplands and have received approximately 11,000 reports to the Pure office.

If you were to put all of this rubbish into standard household rubbish bags, you would fill over 400,000 bags. If you lined up each of the bags that Pure has removed from the landscape they would stretch all the way from Dublin to Dingle.

Pure would like to thank all of the groups and people throughout Wicklow who have improved and enhanced the county through their work, dedication and commitment, on the numerous Pure Miles. They look forward to more good work in 2019.

Wicklow People