Bin Charge Campaign Gathers Momentum

Thorntons_bin_protestThere was a great turnout last night at the latest protest outside Greyhound Recycling’s Plant in Clondalkin against bin charge hikes that private waste management companies are bringing in on July 1st. The planned charges will see the annual bin charge for Thorntons more than double from €50 to around €104, their chief ‘competitor’ Greyhound impose similar hikes while the new ‘pay-by-weight’ system will also see huge increases for families.

Speaking at the protest, People Before Profit TD Gino Kenny said that “the madness that saw a vital public service privatised in 2011 has led to endless price hikes, a littering crisis and is extremely bad for the environment. This government doesn’t give a damn that these cowboy companies are free to ratchet up prices any time they like far beyond the means of many to pay. Greedy profiteers like Greyhound and Thorntons are holding people to ransom while Enda Kenny pretends in the Dail to know nothing about it. Well he’s going to know when this campaign starts to spread like wildfire!”

According to Deputy Kenny, “the whole thing is a massive rip-off motivated by pure greed. The so-called ‘pay-by-weight’ system being introduced is also going to see struggling families facing price hikes of more than €160 on top of the current flat rate of €282 already paid across the city this year. The black bin for residual waste is supposedly set by this government at 11 cents per kg yet Greyhound are charging 33 cents instead. They didn’t get away with an attempted green bin charge and they’re not going to get away with this either.”

During the protest, a Greyhound spokesperson was forced to come came out to answer campaigners.

“He claimed that ‘no one makes money from recycling’, that ‘competition’ was the reason for the hikes and that ‘Greyhound don’t have anyone on a €50 annual charge.’ All this is complete nonsense,” said Deputy Kenny.

“Companies like Greyhound make huge amounts of money but hide their profits from scrutiny through offshore ownership operations in the likes of the Isle of Man and the Jersey Islands. Both Greyhound and Thorntons imposed an annual charge of 50/60 euro as far back as October 2011 while price hikes are a result of price-fixing cartels, not competition.”

“What this shows is the miserable failure of privatisation. Ultimately, we want these charges scrapped and that this crisis in waste management can only be resolved by taking the service back under public control and out of the greedy hands of these companies.”

The campaign will hold another protest outside Thorntons Recycling in Ballyfermot on Tuesday, 21 July at 6pm and there will be two campaign public meetings in Clondalkin on the issue in the next couple of weeks ahead of a major action on the charge hikes.

On behalf of Gino Kenny TD
PBP Cllrs Ruth Nolan, Madeleine Johansson & Nicky Coules