Government plans to tackle rise in fly-tipping


Government plans to tackle rise in fly-tipping

The government has announced plans to tackle fly-tipping and waste crime after a sharp increase in offences over the past 12 months.

The proposals would see checks on who is able to handle and dispose of waste, as well as a digital tracking system.

There were 1.13 million fly-tipping incidents in England in 2020-21, a rise of 16% on the previous 12 months.

The cost, which includes clear-up and lost taxes, has been estimated to be £1bn a year.

The government says its reforms will address flaws in part of England’s waste disposal system, the Environment Agency’s Carrier, Broker and Dealer registration scheme (CBD).

The consultation on reforms covers England only, but the mandatory digital waste tracking will be UK-wide.

“Organised crime has emerged in this sector because it is in essence low-risk and high-reward,” Sam Corp, head of regulation at the Environmental Services Association, told BBC News.

To count as fly-tipping, waste must be larger than a black bin’s worth. Any less, it’s considered a littering offense

If caught fly-tipping a person can receive a penalty fine or even go to prison. On-the-spot fines start at £400 and have been known to increase to £50,000.

On public land, it is the responsibility of the local council to clear it up and prosecute. Last year, nearly half a million investigations and prosecutions were carried out.

Waste and resources minister Jo Churchill told the BBC the reforms were aimed at cracking down on those responsible for waste crimes.

“People need to be able to see that [they are using] an authorised carrier, and that they have surety that their waste is going to be disposed of properly,” she said.

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Ellie joined Gi Media in July 2021.