Fears are growing of a shortage of landfill space in the south-west next year unless Cork County Council opens its Bottlehill facility.
Kerry County Council has already begun to sound out private companies with a view to forming a partnership to ensure the long-term viability of the north Kerry landfill, near Tralee.
However, some public representatives have called for a council-driven regional solution to the problem, including counties Cork, Kerry, Limerick and Clare.
The issue was raised at this week’s meeting of Kerry County Council, which was told by environmental services director Oliver Ring that all available capacity in its landfill would be used up in 2013 and it could be closed. “We have to decide whether to mothball the landfill, or develop another cell which would involve an investment of €1.5m to €2m,” he said.
From Jul 2013 there will be a 40% limit on organic waste going to landfill and the future of the North Kerry landfill.
Mr Ring said a large amount of waste was being exported for incineration, which was unsustainable, and they were looking to the future of the landfill rather than closing it.
He said private firms would be utilised for their expertise in areas such as composting, prior to material being put into landfill.
Fianna Fáil’s John Brassil said the landfill was a valuable asset and did not want to see it closed. He felt private sector interests would not get involved without having some ownership of the facility and local authorities should pool together.
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