Residents in Dublin's Ballymun have said the survey identifying the area as the country's only litter blackspot, was "not comparing like with like".
40 towns and cities across the country were examined by An Taisce for the Irish Business Against Litter survey.
The IBAL survey ranked Ballymun at the bottom of the list of the 40 areas surveyed saying it had the "unwanted distinction of being the first little blackspot in our surveys in a number of years".
Chairperson of Ballymun Tidy Towns, Robert Murphy, said the findings were disappointing for the local community and would be unhelpful for morale.
"It is discouraging. A lot of work goes on behind the scenes.
"I think it is really easy to roll into Dingle and Killarney and places like that and get a really good result. The size and the population of this town, it is not like for like."
Independent Councillor, Noeleen Reilly said it was demoralising for local volunteers who had won a Pride of Place award in 2016.
"I know the good work that goes on in Ballymun and that wasn't reflected at all in the report.
"Certainly we do have a problem with illegal dumping, but to suggest that we are a litter blackspot is unfair," she said.
"The last thing we want is Ballymun all over the news with a bad story, we are trying to get investment in the area. I don't think it is fair on communities to be painted the way they were today".