Photo: Wood Moss Lane (near Southport)

Fly tippers have been out again this time in Moss Lane Churchtown dumping an armchair and some wood.

Fly-tipping is the illegal disposal of waste without a waste management licence and is a wide-ranging offence. It covers dumping of a single black bin bag, up to thousands of tonnes of waste.

Fly-tipping can be dangerous, pollutes land and waterways and costs the council tax payer significant amounts of money to clear away.

The legislation tackling fly-tipping is complex and can generally be found in the Environmental Protection Act 1990, as amended by the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005.

Fly-tipping is a criminal offence which is committed if either household or industrial and commercial waste is: Deposited or caused or allowed to be deposited on land that does not have a waste management licence Is treated, kept or disposed of on land that does not have a waste management licence Is treated, kept or disposed of in a way that is likely to cause pollution or harm to human health Incorrect disposal of ‘controlled waste’ is also an offence.

Controlled waste includes: General household waste Larger domestic items such as fridges and mattresses Garden refuse Commercial waste such as builders’ rubble, clinical waste and tyres.

Other illegal waste activity includes the deliberate mis-description of waste and the abuse of the exemptions regime available to people or companies in the waste disposal business. In addition, there is an obligation on any producer of waste to make sure that waste is disposed of properly.

This extends to an obligation on householders to take reasonable measures to ensure that their waste is disposed of lawfully, by providing it to a local authority or business that has registered itself with the Environmental Agency.

When disposing of waste to anyone other than your local authority, you should ask for the waste disposer’s ‘waste carrier number’ which can be checked on the Environment Agencies Public Register.

Anyone breaching this obligation could face prosecution and a fine of up to £5,000.


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