Northern Ireland

NI environment: Illegal dumping is public's biggest concern, report finds

Rubbish dumped at the end of a country lane Image copyright AP
Image caption The report said illegal dumping was the biggest environmental concern for the public

Illegal dumping of waste is the biggest environmental concern for the public, according to a Stormont report.

Reusing plastic bags is the single most common step taken by people who want to improve the world around them.

The statistics are part of a publication by Northern Ireland's Department of the Environment.

It found fewer people are "very or fairly concerned" about the environment, down to 70%, a 12-year low.

Apart from illegal dumping of waste, people were most upset by river pollution, traffic congestion and climate change.

People who had adopted "green" practices had mostly switched to reusable bags or changed to energy efficient light bulbs.

The number of plastic bags issued here every year has fallen from 300 million to 91.5 million since the introduction of the 5p carrier bag levy.

On river quality, the statistics show that only a third of rivers monitored are of good standard or better.

And only five of the 21 lakes were of "good" quality.

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