Dublin City Illegal Dumping


Illegal dumping in Dublin and across the four local authorities is a significant financial issue which costs over €1.5million each year.

There are a number of reasons for illegal dumping and fly-tipping – these include people not being able to pay for their waste, putting out waste on a wrong day or not realising when they have to pay for their waste.

It is a social and environmental issue and, with the current population for the Dublin area in excess of 1.3million and continuing to rise, this is a problem requiring an innovative solution to help tackle it.

The Solution

Analytics Engines designed a new software tool called ‘Cobalt ID’ which aimed to help tackle illegal dumping in the Dublin region.

Using our data platform – Analytics Engines XDP – the team brought together data and systems from across all the councils in the Dublin region, creating a single view of all the information available.

Using inbuilt advanced analytics capabilities, Analytics Engines applied machine learning and predictive models to aid in tackling this problem.


The tool automatically provided the Dublin Councils with real-time monitoring information from across the region. It acted as a central hub for all the councils involved highlighting – in real-time – when illegal dumping was taking place by using all of the different existing data points.

Analytics Engines built predictive models based on historical data to highlight where and when illegal dumping may take place, allowing for proactive data-driven decisions to enable targeted allocation of resources.

The tool is based on proven machine learning techniques using large volumes of data to identify patterns and categorise events from disparate datasets, becoming more accurate and efficient as the models are trained and the data available increases.

Each time a dataset is added the tool becomes more effective, learning from previous successes. The question then becomes not, ‘what data can we analyse’ but ‘what data can be made available’ to build the most comprehensive real-time picture and also predict future events.


Smart City Programme Manager at Dublin City Council Jamie Cudden said that Cobalt ID “allows us to react and respond more effectively and deliver insights”.

Working with Analytics Engines was a great experience – it was a real collaboration and also was a fantastic outcome. We’ll continue to work with them as we build out the tools and the application,” he said.

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