New action plan to tackle fly-tipping launches 20 October 2016

#CrimeNotToCare

Reaching the Tipping Point: our action plan for fly-tipping is launched at the Tidy Britain All-Party Parliamentary Group. The launch comes as we reveal the results of two new surveys that show the true scale of the problem.

In the first of two surveys, we found out that 70% of local authorities say fly-tipping is a major problem, while a separate Ipsos MORI survey shows that over a third of people (36%) said they thought it was OK to do things that are legally defined as fly-tipping. 

The growing cost of clearing up unsightly fly-tipped rubbish is putting pressure on local authorities that are already struggling with funding problems.

53% of local authorities who said fly-tipping was a major problem think that changes – including the increase of bulky waste charges and closing recycling centres - have contributed to the problem.

Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton said: “We know that local authorities are at their wits’ end trying to tackle the growing crisis of dumped rubbish and our surveys show that there is a real challenge here to educate the public that not only is it not OK to fly-tip, it is illegal and can result in a substantial fine for householders and a criminal record.”

The Ipsos MORI nationwide survey of 1,133 people in England aged 18+ revealed that 47% of people don’t know that they’re responsible in law if their waste is fly-tipped by a third party and 36% of people think it is acceptable to get rid of an unwanted sofa or mattress in a way that is, legally, classed as fly-tipping.

The latest figures for fly–tipping show that there were more than 900,000 reported fly-tipping incidents in 2014/15 and fly-tipping is costing local councils in excess of £50million a year to deal with.

W have launched an action plan to tackle the blight of fly-tipping, aimed at working in partnership with local authorities and their contractors to raise awareness with the public and help them drive home the message that if residents and businesses want cleaner communities, they need to understand that they have a legal duty of care.

To deliver this plan, we want councils and waste contractors to work with us to raise awareness of the householders’ duty of care through a new campaign, #CrimeNotToCare, but also to team up with our experts to tackle fly-tipping at local level where communities are being hit.

In addition, we are calling on the Government to direct revenue generated through the landfill tax to local authorities to support a free and easily accessible collection and recycling service and enable local authorities to remove charges that might be contributing to increases in fly-tipping.

Currently, the maximum fine for fly-tipping in the magistrates’ court is £50,000 or 12 months in prison but 95% of the fines issued are less than £1,000. We say there should be a review of and report on the application of the Environmental Offences Sentencing Guidelines when it comes to the fly-tipping fines handed out by magistrates.

Finally, we have pledged to impact on the consistency of enforcement practice when it comes to fly-tipping through its National Enforcement Academy.

Commenting on these measures Allison said: "We believe that much can be done to support those agencies in the front-lines acting on fly-tipping. This is a growing problem but our action plan, if adopted by Government and law enforcement agencies at all levels, will make a real difference."