By BRIAN MOORE
FOLLOWING on from the huge response to The Southern Star’s litter campaign in West Cork, shoreline clean-ups are also taking place.
On the shores of Bantry Bay an army of volunteers have turned out to lend a helping hand and clean up the foreshore.
‘Bantry Bay is a very important part of the Wild Atlantic Way and it is fantastic to see so many volunteers out here today to help with the clean-up along out shoreline and our beaches,’ Teddy Browne, environmental officer with Cork County Council, told The Southern Star.
The annual shoreline clean-up sees community groups, local mussel fishermen, BIM and Cork County Council working together to collect any rubbish that has accumulated in the bay after the winter storms.
‘Today, we have Transition Year students from Coláiste Pobail Bheanntraí, as well as local mussel farmers and Tus workers here on the beach at Reendonegan. We all have to take responsibility for our environment and with such an important amenity such as Bantry Bay which, not only serves as a tourist attraction and a spectacular scenic location, but also provides employment for many people who live and work in this area, it is up to us all to ensure that the Bay is maintain for future generations to enjoy,’ Finian O’Sullivan of the Bantry Fish Farm Co-Op said.
Up to 95% of the rubbish collection from the coves and beaches along Bantry Bay will be recycled.
‘For example, most of the line floats will be repaired and reused, and the remaining plastics will be send to Tus-Geal recycling centre in Macroom. This is all about community pride and we have buckets of that here in West Cork. We must also remember Bodo Baginski who championed the bay clean-up and worked very hard to promote awareness of our environment and how important Bantry Bay is to us all,’ Teddy Browne said.
This initiative is run on a yearly basis with support from Bantry Bay Port Company, Cork County Council and Bord Iascaigh Mhara. Captain Michael Murphy of the Bantry Bay Port Company thanked everyone for their help on the day.