Picture sent in by Markus Kraeber showing some of the rubbish collected from the roadside outside Caherconlish
Sadly, there has always been a despicable element in Irish Society with no regard or respect for our beautiful countryside.
Lately, the situation is getting increasingly worse. I can only speak for Caherconlish and its surrounding area, but rest assured that the rest of the county and the whole country are not in any better state. Ditches, roadsides and hedgerows are covered with drink cans, bottles, sweet wrappers, crisp bags, you name it.
It makes one wonder: What exactly goes on inside people’s heads, who, after a visit to the chipper or the local grocery store, throw their rubbish out the car window, rather than to properly bin it at home? How much of an effort would this take?
With the recent lockdowns there is strong evidence of mainly younger people congregating at night time at the roadside of country lanes, consuming alcohol and leaving all empty cans and bottles behind them. What upbringing (or lack of such) must these mindless and ignorant individuals have had?
We are blessed to live in a beautiful country; it is our duty to preserve it for future generations!
Our government, during the last election, had promised to introduce a system of returnable bottles. This means that people have to pay an extra fee when buying glass or plastic bottles and are reimbursed with it when returning the empty bottles to the shop. A system like this is being run very successfully in other European countries; it urgently needs to be introduced here. This would make people think twice before littering and throwing away money.
So far the government has done nothing.
Protecting our environment starts at our own door steps: Parents and educational workers need to teach our children respect and appreciation for nature, we must not tolerate people dumping their rubbish illegally, they have to be prosecuted and should be publicly shamed.
Finally: In the current situation there won’t be the traditional spring clean up, but if all of us would pick up three pieces of litter, every time we are out for a walk, it would make a huge difference.
Markus Kraeber, Caherconlish