WATCH: Rubbish dumped in Norwich beauty spot to launch campaign against illegal fly-tipping
PUBLISHED: 16:30 31 January 2019 | UPDATED: 16:30 31 January 2019
A fly-tipped eyesore has been dumped in a Norwich beauty spot - but this was not the work of idle criminals.
The abandoned pile of rubbish, including an old sofa, car tyres and a fridge freezer, was left in Chapelfield Gardens to illustrate the perennial problem of fly-tipping – and to help launch a county-wide crackdown aiming to cut the annual £1m clear-up cost.
The SCRAP fly-tipping campaign brings together all Norfolk’s councils along with Norfolk Constabulary, the Environment Agency and rural business groups the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) and the Country Land and Business Association (CLA).
The campaign reminds people to check their waste is being taken away for disposal by a licensed carrier – either by asking to see a Waste Carrier Licence or by looking up the company on the Environment Agency website.
John Fisher, chairman of the Norfolk Waste Partnership, said: “I hate to see fly-tipping and I know the vast majority of people do too. Fly-tipping is illegal, unsightly and pollutes the environment.
“There are lots of ways that people can legally get rid of the things they no longer want, so in addition to asking people to avoid giving their waste to rogue traders, the SCRAP campaign will be highlighting how people can dispose of items and stay within the law.”
PC Dave Armstrong from Norfolk Police’s rural crime unit said: “Fly-tipping is an offence: one that poses a risk to people and the environment. This campaign offers practical and helpful advice on how people can dispose of their unwanted items and stay on the right side of the law. We would encourage members of the public to contact their local council if they have any concerns about the issue in the area.”
CLA East regional surveyor Tim Woodward said fly-tipping has become a serious concern for rural communities across East Anglia – and it is not just councils who have to pick up the bill for clearing up illegally-dumped waste.
“Private landowners are responsible for removing rubbish dumped on their land and picking up the bill for doing so, which can often run into hundreds of pounds each time,” he said.
“Fly-tipping is a crime that blights the Norfolk countryside and this campaign will hopefully raise awareness of simple steps members of the public can take to ensure their waste doesn’t end up in a field or on a roadside verge.”
NFU Norfolk county adviser John Newton added: “Fly-tipping is harming Norfolk’s beautiful countryside, posing a danger to wildlife and livestock and costing farmers and landowners time and money to clear away.
“We’re pleased it is being tackled in partnership with the police, local authorities and other organisations. The key message of the SCRAP campaign is that the public can make a real difference by ensuring their waste is disposed of responsibly.”
THE SCRAP CODE
The Norfolk Waste Partnership says people can avoid an unlimited fine by following the SCRAP code:
• S uspect ALL waste carriers.
• C heck with the Environment Agency on 03708 506 506 that the provider taking your waste away is licensed.
• R efuse unexpected offers to have waste taken away.
• A sk what will happen to your waste.
• P aperwork should be obtained – get a full receipt.
The most recent published figures show the estimated cost to local authorities in Norfolk of dealing with illegally dumped waste in 2016/17 was £1,131,773.
About 80pc of the 15,305 recorded fly-tipping incidents in 2017/18 relate to material which could have been accepted from householders for free at the Norfolk County Council Recycling Centres. The authority says statistics show fly-tipping has not increased in Norfolk since the introduction of DIY waste charges.
• For more information about the campaign, fly-tipping and legal ways to get rid of unwanted items, see the SCRAP fly-tipping website.