Waste not: How pandemic has altered Kilkenny people’s recycling habits
Almost two thirds of Kilkenny households avail of a waste collection service. And some 90% of these householders are now using a three bin service, new figures provided the local authority reveal.
The local council announced the figures ahead of Kilkenny Waste Awareness Week, which is taking place all of this week.
Kilkenny County Council said there has been “a sharp increase” on the uptake of the third bin for food waste since 2017 when just 16% of households availed of the service.
The council said in a statement: “The surge can be contributed to the introduction of the waste presentation bye laws in 2019 which saw Kilkenny County Council working with the waste industry and communities to ensure of its effective roll out in urban areas. This is one of many success stories which Kilkenny County Council is keen to promote during Kilkenny Waste Awareness Week.”
The five-day virtual event organised by Kilkenny County Council, in association with the Southern Regional Waste Management Planning Office, is highlighting the role of the county’s waste management facilities such as the Dunmore Recycling & Waste Disposal Centre. It provides up-to-date information on reusing, reducing and recycling that will help the county reduce its waste production.
Kilkenny County Council Director of Services, Sean McKeown, said: “Kilkenny Waste Awareness Week is not just about highlighting what householders are doing to minimise their waste, the week will also outline areas for improvement and offer advice on how best to achieve these goals.”
“The majority of Kilkenny’s citizens are already involved in some form of waste segregation and recycling. A total of 63% of households in the county avail of a waste collection service. An average of 8.2kg of WEEE per person is also collected in Kilkenny, with 30.98 tonnes of textiles collected from textile banks last year.
“I am therefore confident that there is a willingness among the community to improve our carbon footprint, and Kilkenny County Council is eager to provide information and supports as we work together to manage our waste. Kilkenny County Council is delighted therefore to host Kilkenny Waste Awareness Week, with the support of the Southern Regional Waste Management Planning Office,” Mr McKeown added.
The council’s Environmental Awareness Officer, Bernadette Moloney, said she is encouraged by people’s willingness to learn more and do more when it comes to reduce, reuse and recycle.
“Even since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have observed some changes in the county’s recycling patterns. Since mid-March Kilkenny County Council has recorded a 49% increase in the amount of glass, tin and aluminium collected at our 46 bring banks.”
The leader of Kilkenny County Council, Cllr Andrew McGuinness, also welcomed the initiatives, adding: “I urge everyone to join this virtual week of events and follow Kilkenny County Council on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for all the content and highlights associated with Kilkenny Waste Awareness Week.
“These platforms, along with mywaste.ie will continue to be a resource for the people of Kilkenny, helping them to stay informed about the county’s waste management plans and our progression in this area, long after this week’s events are over.”
PHOTO: Siobhan Donohoe the local waste week campaign ambassador with Frank Stafford, A/Senior Engineer of the Environment Section. Picture – Vicky Comerford