Headlines: October 6th, 2009

Fly tipping or “dumping on the fly” has decreased by 9% compared to last year, but there were still over one million incidents reported. The reduction is linked to tougher enforcement.

Dumping domestic, construction, commercial or other waste does not only cost councils significant amounts of money for disposal, but it can be hazardous to the public, especially when the waste consists of drums of toxic material, asbestos sheeting or syringes. There can also be damage to watercourses and underlying soil quality from the dumped waste.

The latest figures for fly tipping from Defra reveal that the estimated cost of clearance of illegally dumped waste reported by councils in this period was £54.9million and that 50% of all fly-tips occurred on highways.

The reduction in fly tipping is attributed to tougher enforcement action by councils. Enforcement actions increased in 2008-09 by 3.9% to over 520,000. There were also 2,000 prosecutions.

Defra has committed to continue to work with the Environment Agency and councils to prevent illegal waste activity through a combination of education, prevention and enforcement. Measures the Government are taking to reduce fly-tipping include reviewing legislation to make it easier for businesses to dispose of their waste correctly and campaigns to explain to businesses how they can dispose of their waste responsibility.