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One in five Londoners admits to fly-tipping in the past two years

Lack of awareness of what fly-tipping is has led one in five Londoners to fly-tip in the past two years, our new report produced in partnership with London Borough Environment Directors Network (LEDNet) reveals.

The new report includes the findings of an online YouGov survey of 1,000 Londoners, who were asked about their fly-tipping knowledge and behaviour.

Black bin bags of rubbish left next to bins is the most common form of fly-tipping – yet more than two thirds of people (69 per cent) – were unable to correctly identify this as fly-tipping.

In London fly-tipping has increased at twice the rate observed nationally, rising by 14 per cent from 2015/16 to over 366,000 reported incidents in 2016/17. London boroughs spend £18 million each year dealing with fly-tipping.

Fly-tipping behaviour also appears to decrease with age, according to the survey, with 30 per cent of 18-24 year old respondents saying they had fly-tipped compared to 13 per cent of those aged 55 and over.

This research will now be used to design pilots that trial innovative approaches to tackle fly-tipping.

In order to drive improvements in tackling household fly-tipping, the research by LEDNet and Keep Britain Tidy makes the following recommendations to local authorities and other organisations or campaigns involved in waste disposal:

  1. Consider treating the issue of fly-tipping black bag/cardboard waste separately from the issue of fly-tipping bulky waste and other items.
  2. Use relevant images
  3. Use plainer and more specific language
  4. Extend communications about how waste services work and consider use of value-based communications
  5. Reduce the hassle factor and consider reviewing current bulky waste collection services and embrace alternative services
  6. Consider how current policies and services may unintentionally be driving fly-tipping behaviour
  7. Increase perceived threat of enforcement with residents and businesses
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