Over a fifth of pavements in Mid and East Antrim Borough have unacceptable levels of litter, a recent Northern Ireland wide survey has revealed.
Environmental charity Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful carried out the Northern Ireland Litter Survey, measuring the amount of litter on pavements and roads across the country.
It revealed that Mid and East Antrim has a litter pollution index percentage of 21.
This figure effectively means that 21% of the 50m stretches of pavements surveyed (known as transects) failed to meet the standard for litter, which is set in the NI Code of practice for litter.
However the report revealed that Mid and East Antrim Borough Council are taking active steps to address litter problems in the borough.
The survey stated that on average the council issued six fixed penalties per 10,000 people in the borough.
It also reported that Mid and East Antrim Borough Council have spent £2,052,675 in the 2015-2016 period, on street cleansing across the borough as a whole.
Figures show that the council imposed six fixed penalties per 10,000 people for littering, in the Mid and East Antrim borough.
A spokesperson for Mid and East Antrim said: “Mid and East Antrim Borough Council is committed to the provision of a clean, litter-free environment across the whole Borough.
“As residents and visitors alike are expected to be responsible in regard to litter, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council officers are vigilant in enforcing the relevant legislation. This is in regard to littering and on dog fouling, with fixed penalties issued as appropriate.
“We also work hard on community involvement and have been, for example, supporting the Live Here Love Here campaign delivered by Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful.
“This is a positive, people-powered campaign focused on improving our local environment and building a sense of pride in our local communities.
“Council has been funding grants of around £1,000 to £2,000 as part of a three–year programme to empower the local community in running specific projects to create and maintain a better environment for all and have committed £20,000 in the past three years to this funding.”
Meanwhile, a resident contacted the Larne Times to complain about the litter problem on the grass verges along the main arterial roads around Larne.
The new A8 has proven successful in improving journey times to and from Larne, however the new road appears to suffers from the same old problem, litter. The resident, who did not want to be named said: “Tourists travel these roads coming into Larne and beyond every single day, not just buses but tourists who have rented cars and are going up the coast to see places made famous by Game of Thrones.
“How are you expected to sell Larne as a tourist spot when the roads that bring tourists into the borough are such a mess.
“They are turning Larne into a pig sty. The new A8 road has rubbish on the sides all the way down it. Bottles and rubbish. Lazy drivers throwing rubbish out their car window. Something needs to be done about it.”
The resident came up with a suggestion as to how more people could be drafted in to address the issue, without putting too much strain on the council’s budget.
He added: “The council will claim they don’t have the finances to hire staff to carry out litter picks on these roads, but how about using people on community service?”