Dublin’s “Leafy Suburbs” have been looking more like “Weedy Suburbs” recently.
But there’s actually a good reason, even if they look dire.
It’s due to the Council’s decision to stop using chemical weedkillers.
The decision was taken some months ago after several reports suggested that weedkillers containing Glyphosate were dangerous.
While some scientists maintain the products are safe, the World Health Organisation’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified Glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic in humans” in March 2015.
And although there are some scientists who maintain the herbicide is safe, the council decided to err on the side of caution, and cease using it.
But that meant a delay in dealing with weeds this summer and the unchecked growth of weeds on streets and roads throughout the city.
But now, the Council has appointed a contractor who will begin to remove the weeds this week.
Instead of a chemical herbicide the contractor will use a product and process known as “Foamstream.”
This involves the application of hot water, sugar and natural oils to the weeds and is an alternative to the use of Glyphosate based products and is less harmful to the environment and poses no threat to human or animal health.
This contractor led work will be supplemented by a programme of manual weed removal, which will be carried out by Dublin City Council’s ‘Waste Management Services’.
It is hoped that most of the work will be done before Autumn so the suburbs can return to their leafy state.