Speaking this evening after the judgement in the High Court that the illegal dump in Whitestown, County Wicklow must be cleared by Wicklow County Council, Sinn Féin TD for Wicklow John Brady TD said that the Council has serious questions to answer and should have done more during their 2009 remediation work which Mr Justice Richard Humphreys described as “botched”.
Deputy Brady said:
“I am not surprised by this judgement. The Council have known that this dump was an issue of concern for years and yet they used the dump themselves for almost two decades. This decision today demonstrates a lack of judgement and raises serious questions about their operations.
“The Council have serious questions to answer around their involvement in the dump and the €3.5m they spent on remediation which the Judge described in the Court as a botched effort. This money was wasted and an estimated €30 million will now have to be spent clearing not only the landfill from the site, but the contaminated soil as well. The true cost may indeed be much greater. We’re talking about 2.4 million tons of material.
“My concern is now for the taxpayer who will have to foot the bill and particularly for the residents of the Whitestown and Donard area as this clearance, which will have a timetable of three years, will cause major disruption in the area. I have contacted the EPA and the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten to outline how the remediation is to be funded and carried out.”