Fly-tipping research reveals 15% fall in incidents
The number of fly-tipping incidents in England has fallen by 15% over the last year, according to a new survey.
Figures obtained from a Freedom of Information (FOI) request by waste clearance company AnyJunk, revealed that 651,380 fly-tipping incidents were recorded in England for the 12 month period 31 March 2010 - 31 March 2011, compared to 777,774 incidents during the same period of 2009-2010.
According to AnyJunk, the aim of its research was to provide better understanding of the relative performance of councils in order to identify whether measures taken by councils influenced fly-tipping rates, with the overall objective of highlighting potential opportunities for further improvement.
Commenting on the findings, AnyJunk's founder and managing director, Jason Mohr, said: "It's encouraging that fly-tipping rates have reduced across England over the last year, and without a doubt, any drop has to be celebrated."
The research shows clear differences between the councils, with the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea rated as the most successful in tackling its fly-tipping problem after it reduced levels of illegal dumping by 88%. The Borough of Broxbourne (70%) and Stoke-on-Trent City (65%) are second and third respectively.
In contrast, the London Borough of Newham takes the title of England's worst fly-tipping area, with 36,135 instances of illegal dumping across its 14 square miles. This is the equivalent of one fly-tip for every seven residents.
Mohr added: "Despite the fact that there is still a way to go in some regions, rather than vilify those with the biggest problem, we're keen to celebrate the most improved councils and to encourage them to share best practice."
Despite the reduction in incidents the report suggests that measures taken by councils to reduce illegal dumping such as free bulky waste collection, lower skip hire permits and stricter enforcement and sentencing have not had a major impact, and that local authorities are still spending around £36M to clear illegally dumped waste.
Instead it found that an increase in enforcement action, which increased by 4.1% has played a more important role, although it said the successful prosecution rate is still low at 0.4% and should be reviewed.
The full report, including survey results for all councils in England, is available to download from the AnyJunk website at http://www.anyjunk.co.uk/fly-tipping