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KBT campaign tells householders it’s a #CrimeNotToCare about fly-tipping

Keep Britain Tidy has launched a new campaign to combat the alarming rise in criminal fly-tipping, #CrimeNotToCare, targeting ‘ordinary people’ to promote awareness of the dangers of using unlicensed waste carriers.

Keep Britain Tidy campaign tells householders it’s a #CrimeNotToCare about flytipping
Fly-tipping waste recovered in East Herts is displayed in Hertford
The national anti-litter charity has announced the campaign, its ‘biggest ever’, today (20 March), after government statistics released a few weeks ago showed that the number of fly-tipping incidents dealt with by local authorities had risen by four per cent in 2015/16 to 936,000. This followed increases of 5.6 per cent and 20 per cent in the two previous years.

These incidents, which don’t include those carried out on private land, cost councils £49.8 million to deal with that year. The number of fly-tips has risen steadily since 2012/13, when 711,000 incidents were recorded. In addition to the council costs, the Country and Land Business Association estimates the clean up cost as a result of fly-tipping on private land is somewhere between £100 million and £150 million a year. 

Last year, Sir James Bevan, the Chief Executive of the Environment Agency, said that waste crime had become “the new narcotics”, comparing the fight against criminals illegally dumping or storing waste and making hefty profits to that “against drugs in the 1980s”.

KBT campaign tells householders it’s a #CrimeNotToCare about fly-tipping
The statistics from the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) suggest that around 67 per cent of the fly-tipped material is coming from households, and KBT’s #CrimeNotToCare campaign will target ‘ordinary people’ to make them aware that giving their bulky waste to unregistered waste carriers could make them complicit in waste crime.

Fifteen local authority partners from across England are supporting the campaign, including Manchester, Newcastle and Brighton & Hove city councils. A full list of participating councils can be found below.

The councils are today launching #CrimeNotToCare by depositing a sample of the fly-tipping they have collected over the weekend, wrapped in crime-scene tape, in a prominent location to illustrate the problem they are tackling and to raise awareness of individuals’ responsibility to dispose of their rubbish correctly.

This will be followed by an ongoing campaign with householders, providing information aiming to help them make the right choices and avoid prosecution.

‘Fly-tipping epidemic’

Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton said: “We are launching this campaign at a time when our country is in the grip of a fly-tipping epidemic.

“Our research shows that less than half of people understand that they can be prosecuted, and end up with a criminal record, if they pay someone to take away their waste who subsequently fly-tips it.”

All businesses, residents and producers of waste are legally obligated to check that any party disposing of their waste is properly licensed. Anyone contracting a company to dispose of waste is therefore urged to check their licence or check the public register to see if a site is permitted or the company is a registered waste carrier.

Fly-tipping continues to rise as councils spend £50m clearing dumps
Number of fly-tipping incidents in England, 2007/08 to 2015/16 (in thousands)
Ogden-Newton concluded: “A third of people also think that it’s OK to do things that are, legally, classed as fly-tipping, so the launch of #CrimeNotToCare is [a] vital first step in trying to turn the tide on the fly-tipping epidemic that is costing our country millions of pounds to clean up.”

Partner councils

The local authorities partnering with the Keep Britain Tidy #CrimeNotToCare campaign are:

  • Swindon Borough Council
  • Brighton & Hove City Council
  • Rugby Borough Council
  • Thanet District Council
  • Stafford Borough Council
  • Central Bedfordshire Council
  • Your Homes Newcastle with Newcastle City Council
  • Gedling Borough Council
  • Ashfield District Council
  • Hull City Council
  • London Borough of Brent
  • Wirral Council
  • East Herts Council
  • Harrow Council
  • Manchester City Council

More information about the campaign can be found on Keep Britain Tidy’s website.

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