A nationwide survey of Ireland’s rivers, beaches and harbours by business group Irish Business Against Litter has revealed that the River Suir at Waterford City is heavily littered.
The beach and environs at Tramore was deemed moderately littered.
Nationally the study carried out by An Taisce, showed only 4 of 50 areas surveyed were deemed Clean to European Norms.
Almost 40% were littered or heavily littered, with some areas in Cork Harbour and Doolin Pier in Clare classified as litter blackspots.
The report for the River Suir said while there was the typical food related litter along the path between the car parking and the river, there were also significant numbers of traffic cones, some shopping trollies, domestic rubbish and building materials within the water.
The report for Tramore said there was litter on the prom and on the beach, both above and below the water line in the main cigarette butts, sweet papers, fast food wrappers and ice-cream wrappers
As well as food related litter there was some discarded clothing and broken handles from plastic shovels.
The overall results contrast with those of IBAL’s recent surveys of towns across the country which show 75% of areas to be clean, compared to just 8% in this survey.
Conor Horgan of IBAL. said “Sadly, accumulations of litter in and around our waterways are a common sight in Ireland and this is borne out by these disappointing results.
“If we can call our towns clean, we cannot say the same for the areas around our beaches and rivers.
It took almost ten years of naming and shaming for local authorities to get to grips with litter in our towns.
IBAL has set about pushing for a similar turnabout in respect of coastal areas and waterways.”