New campaign to tackle blight of fly-tipping in Essex
PUBLISHED: 12:07 06 September 2017 | UPDATED: 12:07 06 September 2017
PAUL STARR Photographer
New figures have revealed fly-tipping is draining more than £1million of taxpayers’ money each year across Essex.
This week Love Essex, a partnership of councils, businesses and environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, is launching its #CrimeNotToCare campaign to remind residents they could unwittingly end up with a criminal record and face an unlimited fine, if a rogue trader dumps their waste illegally.
Simon Walsh, Essex county councillor for environment and waste, said: “There were 17,547 separate incidents of fly-tipping countywide last year, costing taxpayers’ £1,093,907 to clear up – money that could have been better spent on vital services.
“Almost 50% of people don’t know they’re responsible by law if their rubbish is fly-tipped by a third party. We hope CrimeNotToCare will educate people on how to dispose of their waste correctly to ensure they don’t end up with a criminal record and a hefty fine.”
In Uttlesford there were 193 recorded fly-tips in 2016/17 – the lowest for any Essex authority, but slightly up on the 189 the previous year.
Susan Barker, Uttlesford district councillor for environmental services, said: “We need the public to understand their rubbish is their responsibility and they must do the right thing with it. Giving it to a ‘man with a van’ who offers to get rid of it cheaply could prove costly for people and result in them getting a criminal record.”
The Braintree district recorded 724 incidents in 2016/17, a fall of 7% on 2015/16.
Overall in Essex there has been an increase of 16% year-on-year.
The number of prosecutions of residents where fly-tipped waste has been traced back to them is also on the rise.
One resident from Braintree failed in his duty of care by instructing an unauthorised waste carrier to remove his waste, including asbestos, guttering and downpipes – which was dumped on public land in Shalford.
After investigating the evidence, it was traced back to the man who admitted to the offence and was fined £500, ordered to pay £1,296 costs and a £15 surcharge.
Keep Britain Tidy chief executive Allison Ogden-Newton added: “#CrimeNotToCare is an important campaign for our country and we are delighted that Love Essex is partnering with us.
“There are almost a million fly-tipping incidents in England every year and cleaning it all up costs us £50m a year. It blights communities and our countryside and is a menace.”
For information and advice visit www.recycleforessex.com/crimenottocare