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November 2007

England’s fly-tipping numbers on the increase

London— Minister for waste, Joan Ruddock, published new fly-tipping figures. The flycapture results for April, 2006 to March, 2007, indicated more fly-tipping incidents are being reported and more action is being taken to tackle them.

The results, covering 354 English authorities, show an increase in incidents over the past year, however, nearly half of all cases reported came from Liverpool City Council.

Key results of the report included:

  • Local authorities in England reported that they had dealt with more than 2.6 million incidents of fly-tipping - up five percent from 2005-06. 1,289,410 incidents were reported by Liverpool City Council.
  • Enforcement action taken by local authorities, excluding Liverpool City Council, increased by 46 percent to 357,829 cases. The figure for all authorities, including Liverpool City Council, was 16 percent.
  • Half of all fly-tips recorded involved single black bags and it is estimated that the majority of these occurred in back alleys and involved waste placed out for collection incorrectly, primarily in Liverpool. However, when Liverpool City Council is excluded, 48 percent of all recorded fly-tips occurred on the highway and 53 percent were of a car trunk or small van load in size.
  • Seventy-seven percent of fly-tips involved household waste - a 5.4 percent increase on 2005-06. Once Liverpool City Council is excluded, 56 percent of all fly-tips involve household waste - a 10 percent increase from 2005-06.

The Government published its Waste Strategy for England 2007 in May, which set out a blueprint for not only recycling and reusing waste, but also preventing it in the first place. The strategy makes it clear that initiatives to boost recycling should be supported by fly-tipping strategies aimed at preventing the illegal dumping of waste.

  • Decisions about the most appropriate household waste collection services are a matter for local authorities, not central Government. Work Government is carrying out to help tackle fly-tipping includes:
  • Reviewing legislation on the controls that are in place to deal with the management and carriage of waste.
  • Developing legislation that will give local authorities the powers to stop, search and instantly seize vehicles being used to commit fly-tipping offences.
  • Continuing to fund the Environment Agency’s targeted campaigns to disseminate good practice to businesses and raise awareness of good waste management practices.
  • Funding the Environment Agency to develop Flycapture Enforcement, a training program aimed at local authority officers and their legal teams to increase knowledge of the relevant legislation and to develop skills in effective enforcement and prosecution of fly-tipping.