23 August 2018

Meet Our Recycling Ambassadors

Meet Our Recycling Ambassadors

Dan Boyle - Southern Region Recycling Ambassador

Dan Boyle is one of our Southern Region Recycling Ambassadors, he has been involved environmental campaigning for almost thirty years. He has been particularly prominent as an elected public representative in local and national government.

"As someone who has self identified as Green for most of my adult life I lack something of a sense of surprise when I visit some groups. Despite that I have enjoyed the workshop approach ahead of the public information approach at general events. With workshops people who attend have come with prepared questions, anxious to know how to do the right thing. 

The common theme has been enthusiasm for recycling, but sometimes that has combined with frustration often expressed by people at the restrictions on what can and can’t be recycled. I would hope that one result of this awareness campaign is that more effort can be made to make that which is currently not possible to recycle to become recyclable.

The campaign has also had the benefit of getting more people to think about the creation of waste and on how to avoid it. I have been struck by the number of people, who having come to a workshop, went on to make further contact with other environmental NGOs such as Zero Waste Ireland or local Plastic Free groups.

What I’ve been surprised about is the abundance of public spaces that are available for making presentations of this type. Libraries have been particularly useful venues. The enthusiasm of the groups is also worth noting. Whether the audience has been the general public or a special interest group (a big shout out to the Eco Congregation of the Church of Ireland in Carrigaline) the tenor at all the presentations was that recycling was a good thing that needed to be made better.

The question I would ask now is the question that is also most asked by presentation participants. Where now from here? It would be somewhat negligent to plant seeds and then not watch them grow. I hope the recycling ambassador programme is just the beginning of tackling the issue of Ireland's waste. 

For my own I have enjoyed the experience. I have even been surprised by the amount of goodwill that seems to exist out there. The number of people who took part in the Sick of Plastic day of action is another healthy sigh that this public goodwill will be constant, and that it can be harnessed to bring further improvements in the areas of waste management and recycling.

I wish the programme well in whatever form it takes in the future. It has been a privilege to have been a part of it."

Pictured: Dan on the left with Southern Region coordinator Tad Kirakowski.