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Local Authority Case Studies

LIMERICK CITY COUNCIL IMPLEMENTATION OF SYSTEM TO DATE

Statistics

Area (Hectares) 2,300
Population (1996) 52,039
Miles of Road 113 km

Phase 1 (Set up Phase)

Work Commenced in July 2000 with the identification of Potential Litter Generators. This work was co-ordinated by the Environmental Scientist with two students who were working in the Environment Department for the summer. The students carried out visual surveys along streets in the city and recorded Potential Litter Generators. The process was time consuming and the students did not have the work completed before they went back to college. The remaining surveys had to be carried out by the Environmental Scientist in addition to her other duties within the department. In October 2000 Environmental Scientist contacted Limerick City Council's Planning Department who provided her with an Address GIS System, which she went through over the next three months verifying all Potential Litter Generators.

Total Number of Generators: 559

Class 1 311
Class2 212
Class 3 36

The Potential Litter Generators and the address GIS database were then linked to produce Litter Generation Potential Maps. Problems were experienced when attempts were made to make the Generator list and the GIS System compatible. Eventually the LGCSB solved the problem. The maps were completed by April 2001.

Phase 2 (Bench Mark Phase)

At this stage Limerick City Council appointed an Environmental Inspector. It was proposed that he would carry out the surveys and the Environmental Scientist would input the data. The surveys commenced in August 2001 when the Inspector was confident he had enough local knowledge of litter situation in the city to carry out the surveys consistently and accurately. The Litter Quantification Surveys were carried out first and Environmental Scientist accompanied the inspector on these surveys so that both had a consistent approach to the taking and inputting of the surveys.

The surveys were then carried out over a six-week period as part of the Inspectors routine inspections. The Inspector was given a digital camera and each survey area was photographed and downloaded onto computer, which saved on storage space. All areas to be surveyed were discussed with the Environmental Scientist before the inspector went on the streets. Initially the Inspector was given a map of the city with the survey areas marked out. However, this was found to be cumbersome and awkward instead the Environmental Scientist listed all survey areas on a sheet paper giving directions in relation to Shops and Businesses e.g. O'Connell Street, from McDonalds to HMV. This proved successful and the survey areas were listed in a geographical order to prevent the Inspector retracing his steps.

All surveys were returned to the Environmental Scientist at the end of each day so they could be inputted regularly. All surveys were entered and returned to the Litter Monitoring Body by November 2001.

Results

Total Number of Litter Quantification Surveys undertaken: 12

Total Number of Litter Pollution Surveys undertaken: 78

Litter Pollution Index 1: 21 27%
Litter Pollution Index 2: 33 42%
Litter Pollution Index 3: 17 22%
Litter Pollution Index 4: 6 8%
Litter Pollution Index 5: 1 1%

The results were then presented to Environment Strategic Planning Committee in late November 2001. Both Management and Local Representatives thought the System to useful and are keen to compare results with the 2002 surveys.

Additional Uses of the GIS System

The maps have also been used to identify ways of combating litter. A Litter Bin survey was carried out and locations of litterbins and bring banks were mapped and compared with the blackspots given by the GIS Package. This has been an essential tool in locating new litterbins and prioritising times when streets need cleaning in the city.

Ms. Ursula Hynes, Limerick City Council,
Tel: 061 415799

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