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Drones, bodycams and CCTV to take on illegal dumpers

Drones, bodycams and CCTV to take on illegal dumpers

Cllr Paul McCabe is pleased that regulations for council use of drones and cameras to tackle illegal dumping are now in force.

Meath County Council has invested in new technology to detect, prosecute and deter illegal dumping and flytipping.

Regulations for the council to use drones, bodycams and covert CCTV cameras to tackle illegal dumping are now in force.

Having campaigned for this for years, Cllr Paul McCabe said: “Locally, environmental groups have been using covert cameras for some time, however now the local authority will be in a position to use this technology. It will help catch those environmental criminals who are causing so much damage within our communities.”

Each year Meath County Council receives in excess of 1,000 complaints regarding illegal dumping, all of which are investigated, and actions up to Court proceedings are initiated in cases where the necessary evidence is available.

Also each year provision of over €2m is made in the council’s budget to cover litter management, street cleaning, and the monitoring and enforcement of the waste regulations.

CCTV, Drones and other mobile recording devices are used for the prevention, detections and prosecution of waste offences, but in order to comply with GDPR requirements, codes of practice have to be prepared in respect of the use of such equipment, and these are currently at final approval stage and expected to be legislated for in the coming months.

In terms of the locations where such equipment will be used this will generally be determined on the basis of the complaints and particularly in areas which are subject to continuous dumping.

Meath County Council stated: “Such areas sometimes benefit from funding under the Anti-Dumping Initiative (ADI) – this scheme was introduced in 2017 and aimed at encouraging a collaborative approach between local authorities, communities, and other State Agencies to tackle the problems of localized illegal dumping.

To date, funding of over €12 million has been provided by the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications (DECC) under this initiative and which supported the delivery of almost 1300 projects across the 31 local authorities. Of these, Meath County Council has drawn down funding of over €600k in respect of over 50 projects across the county.”

The article was first published here

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