Forestry agency Coillte have given details of the costs of cleaning up just one illegal dump in Kingscourt, Co Cavan.
The agency expects a bill of around €100,000 to clean up just one site — enough to employ two nurses for a year.
Coillte’s yearly bill for cleaning up illegal dumping across the country nudges towards €500,000 — 10 nurses.
In today’s world that may not seem a huge figure but it is an affront to the idea that Coillte woods are a national resource to be enjoyed by all citizens.
It is also a waste of money that might be used to far greater benefit elsewhere.
Under legislation, once waste is dumped on land the landowner is responsible and becomes the owner of the rubbish. So bin it.
But under the laws of commonsense, it is impossible to believe that this dumping can go unnoticed, that someone in the neighbourhood does not know who is responsible for this criminal vandalism.
Once again, we fall victim to the idea that to report wrongdoing is wrong — and pay an inordinate price, financial and environmental, for that foolishness.
Report these criminals and put them out of business.