Remediation of Haulbowline Island – or at least its partial remediation – was in the news yesterday:
The government had promised a “whole of island” approach to the remediation but now seems unable to decide which department is responsible for taking the project forward.
I was concerned about this last June and followed it up in the Council Chamber through a motion which you will find at this link: Motion. The response from the Department to my motion is here: Response to motion. (The highlighting is my own.)
Friends of the Irish Environment who had brought the European Commission to see the East Tip contamination in 2011 were also concerned. Their information is that survey work on the island had not merely found the remaining 11 hectares to be physically connected with the 9 hectares of the East Tip but also that the area around the steelworks factory site was that of greatest contamination on the island. They alerted the European Commission to the government’s “breach of promise” by not following through on remediation of either the steelworks factory site or the South Tip: EU_complaint_Haulbowline_full_1.05.18. (Again, the highlightling is my own.)
Haulbowline is one of this country’s worst pollution legacies. That the government might address the clean-up of only the bit that is relevant to keeping Ireland out of trouble with the European Commission is disgusting, especially as lack of funding cannot be cited as an excuse. Whatever departments are passing the buck on this one need to sort it out fast and get on with it 😠