Fly-tipping incidents hit 17 year high in Flintshire
New figures released by the Welsh Government show the number of fly-tipping incidents in Flintshire have increased by 61% in the past year.
The data reveals that from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023, Flintshire recorded 1,592 fly-tipping incidents, marking the highest count since the Welsh Government, local authorities, and other agencies started tracking fly-tipping in Wales in 2006.
Flintshire Council investigated nearly 480 more fly-tipping incidents than the previous year.
1,448 investigations were launched last year resulting in 38 fixed penalty notices being issued, the highest number since records began in 2006.
Clearing up fly-tipping cost taxpayers in Flintshire over £145,000 last year, up 60% on the previous year, the latest figures also show.
Across all Wales, reported fly-tips fell to 39,853 compared to last year’s 41,333 incidents, a 4% drop.
The data also shows that between 1 April 2022 and 31 March 2023, there were 59 fly-tipping prosecutions in the whole of Wales; however, none were made by local councils in North Wales.
Rhondda Cynon Taf, Newport, and Cardiff were among the councils achieving the highest number of successful fly-tipping prosecutions in Wales; while the highest-performing councils for issuing fixed penalty notices (FPNs) — fines to those whose waste was found to be fly-tipped — were Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, and Blaenau Gwent.
These actions are taken to enforce the law and deter fly-tippers — fixed penalty notices are issued for smaller scale environmental crime such as littering, smaller-scale fly-tipping, and failure to check someone has a licence when removing their waste.
Meanwhile, prosecution is used to penalise those responsible for large-scale fly-tipping, repeat fly-tipping offences, commercial fly-tipping, or the fly-tipping of hazardous waste.
The 2022-23 report, which analyses fly-tips recorded by councils between 1 April 2022 and 31 March 2023, also revealed that a total of 27,373 waste enforcement actions (warning letters, fixed penalty notices, formal cautions, and prosecutions) were actioned in Wales.
According to Fly-tipping Action Wales (FtAW), Wales continues to see huge numbers of online scammers, often dubbed ‘Facebook fly-tippers’, posing as legitimate waste removers in online communities, taking advantage of unsuspecting householders and illegally dumping their waste.
Fly-tipping clear-ups cost the Welsh taxpayer an estimated £1.83 million between 2022 and 2023, with household waste making up 70% of fly-tips.
However, this figure could be dramatically decreased if all householders follow their waste Duty of Care, which involves ensuring they hire only registered waste carriers to take their waste away.
Welsh residents can support their local council and help to continue the downwards trend by always checking that the person who removes waste from their home has a licence; waste carrier licences can be checked via naturalresources.wales/CheckWasteLicence or by calling 0300 065 3000.
Neil Harrison, Team Leader for Fly-tipping Action Wales, said: “Councils across Wales are working tirelessly to crack down on fly-tipping and to deter the criminals who are spoiling our landscape. It is really positive to see their ongoing efforts reflected in the overall decrease in fly-tipping across Wales in this year’s figures.
“It remains the case that around 70% of all fly-tips contain waste from households, which is why we are urging residents to protect themselves from unregistered illegal waste carriers and asking them to always check with Natural Resources Wales that the person they use to remove any excess waste from their home is a registered waste carrier.”
“The rise of social media has brought with it an increase in illegal fly-tippers, posing as legitimate waste removers in online groups — so, it is more important than ever that householders are vigilant in following their Household waste Duty of Care when paying someone to remove their waste.”
Fly-tipping is a serious crime. It causes considerable damage to the environment, the economy, and local communities — householders who don’t check for a licence face a fixed penalty of £300 or a fine of up to £5,000 and a criminal record if taken to a Magistrates Court. The person found guilty of fly-tipping the waste can receive an unlimited fine and up to five years in prison.
When arranging the removal of household waste, people in Wales are required to check with Natural Resources Wales that the person or company they are using are a registered waste carrier by visiting naturalresources.wales/CheckWasteLicence or calling 03000 653000.
Read more on how to avoid a ’Facebook Fly-tipper’ when finding a waste carrier on the Fly-tipping Action Wales website, search flytippingactionwales.org/en/blog/StopFacebookFlytippers.
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