Renua candidate for the Castlebar electoral area, Michael Farrington, has pledged to take on Ireland’s fly-tipping and littering problem by naming and shaming the perpetrators.
Farrington said: "The collection by Castlebar Tidy Towns of 150 black bags of “dashboard rubbish” along about two miles of the N5 to Turlough recently, is proof - if proof were needed, that casual littering is a widespread societal problem.
"Fly tipping in the countryside, in woods and even rivers is an assault on wider Irish society. It impinges on the quality of life for all of us, is damaging to the environment, is a danger to wildlife and is expensive to clean up. While it impinges on our lives - imagine the impact on tourists when we promote ourselves as a clean, green and welcoming nation.
"This is one issue where we can use new technology to our advantage, and identifying the culprits will be facilitated by greater use of Community CCTV schemes. This urgently needs to be installed in key areas and will play a key role in bringing fly-tippers to book.
"Some people on the left will try and make a political point about this, to say this is as a result of the introduction of bin charges. I utterly reject that. Dashboard littering is about lack of civic pride and taking personal responsibility for one’s own litter. If people can drive miles out the country to fly tip from cars and trailers they certainly can afford the bin charges.
"It is time that Mayo County Council were far more pro-active on litter. We, the people, need to recognise that Mayo has a littering and fly-tipping problem. As individuals, we need to be mindful of our own contribution to the problem and be more active in reporting incidents to the authorities.
"It is time to name and shame those who engage in environmental vandalism. I will work to set up an ‘Ugly Mugs’ gallery where those found guilty of fly-tipping will be named and shamed on the internet.
"We will establish an online ‘Hall of Shame’ whereby the names and photographs of those found guilty in the Courts of littering or fly-tipping will be maintained."