Warning over €4,000 food fines in Limerick

Nick Rabbitts

Reporter:

Nick Rabbitts

Cllr Jim Long: concerned people may be fined 'doing the right thing'
HOUSEHOLDERS are being warned that from July, they will have to segregate their food waste from their normal waste - or face a €4,000 fine.

HOUSEHOLDERS are being warned that from July, they will have to segregate their food waste from their normal waste - or face a €4,000 fine.

City councillors were given a presentation on the new Household Good Waste and Bio-waste regulations which come into force this summer.

The regulations have been put in place to promote the segregation and recovery of household food waste, and meet set targets for the diversion of waste from landfill.

For their part, waste collection companies must provide a separate collection for food waste from households.

Alternatively, they can bring food waste to an authorised facility, or compost waste themselves.

Under the rules, the softening or breaking of food and placing it in a regular waste bin is to be prohibited.

To ensure bin companies are keeping to the rules, council officials will be allowed to halt and board any vehicle to inspect them.

And in terms of domestic customers, they can enter premises by giving 24 hours notice to see if people are separating their fresh food from general waste.

If this is not the case, they could face a fine of up to €4,000.

Independent northside councillor Kathleen Leddin asked the meeting if the council would supply a separate bin.

Director of service, environment, Caroline Curley said that the bin collection companies are compelled by law to provide these.

Southside councillor Jim Long said he is worried due to the fact some bin collections only occur fortnightly.

“If we store food for two weeks, we are going to create a health hazard in itself. I do not see how people can face a €4,000 for doing ‘the right thing, but the wrong thing,” he asked.

It was pointed out that there are other options like home composting, or bringing food to a facility which would prevent this.