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The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) is calling on householders to support the battle against fly-tipping, by thinking twice about how they dispose of their rubbish this Christmas.

The CLA which represents landowners, farmers and rural businesses says fly-tipping is a national disgrace that blights the countryside and needs to be tackled by penalties that better reflect the seriousness of the crime. According to latest Government figures, there were nearly 80,000 incidents of fly-tipping in the South East during 2016-17 and around 1 million nationally.

In the last year, it is estimated that fly-tipping cost local authorities across the country more than £57 million to clear.

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Robin Edwards, CLA South East Regional Director says that over the festive season, many people have more rubbish to get rid of; whether it is appliances or furniture which have been replaced, old and broken toys or wrapping paper and boxes.

“Householders whose waste is fly-tipped can be prosecuted, so if you pay someone to dispose of your rubbish, make sure they have a Waste Carriers Licence or their fly-tipping could be your responsibility.

“These figures don’t even include rubbish fly-tipped on private land which landowners and farmers have to clear up at their own cost. We are calling on the Government to remove this liability and introduce a new scheme to allow any private landowner who did not cause or knowingly permit fly tipping to dispose of it at a waste disposal site free of charge.”

During 2016-17, the Government figures show only 45 vehicles were seized in connection with fly tipping across the whole of the South East. There were also just over 2,000 fixed penalty notices issued and 171 prosecutions for fly-tipping in the region over the same period.

The CLA’s 5-point plan for tackling fly tipping includes:

• Appoint a national ‘Fly-Tipping Tsar’ to co-ordinate and oversee a more pro-active effort to get to grips with fly-tipping
• Enforce fines for home and business owners whose waste is found in fly-tipped locations
• Impose and enforce penalties which better reflect the seriousness of the crime
• Develop new ways to clear up and support victims
• Promote education and working in partnership

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