New GPS system to help Welsh Government crack down on fly-tipping

2 Mar 2015 01:00 PM

Plans to roll out a system which uses GPS to allow local authorities and other landowners to geographically plot fly-tipping incidents are amongst a range of new Welsh Government measures to tackle fly-tipping.

Outlining the Welsh Government’s strategy for tackling fly-tipping ‘A Fly-tipping Free Wales’ Natural Resources Minister Carl Sargeant said a mixture of education, enforcement and community engagement initiatives was needed to tackle fly-tipping effectively.

During 2013/14 over 32,000 fly-tipping incidents were recorded in Wales costing the Welsh tax payer over £1.9 million to clear. However there is an incomplete picture of fly-tipping in Wales.

The Minister said that work on improving data collection through a system known as Flymapper  would help establish a clearer picture of the precise number and location of fly-tipping incidents in Wales. He added that a clearer picture of enforcement performance was needed.

Carl Sargeant said:

“To enable us to effectively tackle fly-tipping in Wales, we need to have robust data on which to base our programmes. We need to know where and when incidents of fly-tipping are taking place and be able to demonstrate whether current practices are impacting on levels of fly-tipping. Flymapper, when rolled out across Wales, will give us this capability.

“In addition to the number, location and type of waste recorded we also need a clearer picture of the level of investigations and prosecutions taking place. The numbers of successful prosecutions are readily available but we need to look more closely at these figures to get a better understanding of how we are performing and what we can do to improve detection and prosecutions.”

The Minister added that while fly-tipping is a difficult crime to detect he wanted all enforcement bodies to have the necessary tools and skills to enable them to catch offenders and punish them appropriately.

He said:

“Currently the only options for punishing fly-tippers are to take a case to court or issue a simple caution. As part of the strategy we will consider introducing a Fixed Penalty Notice, or other enforcement tools, for fly-tipping incidents. We will also look at the possibility of making the investigation of fly-tipping incidents a statutory duty.”

Gary Evans, Programme Manager of Fly-tipping Action Wales – the organisation responsible for operational delivery of Flymapper, added:

“Fly-tipping Action wales fully supports the Welsh Government’s strategy for a fly-tipping-free Wales.  We remain committed to helping the Minister achieve his strategic aims and objectives, as well as empowering local authorities, private land owners and communities across Wales, to tackle localised fly-tipping  together in a more collaborative and intelligence-led way. The national roll out of our Flymapper GPS system will help achieve this and we will continue to work closely with the Welsh Government and our 50 partner organisations to make it as difficult as possible for fly-tippers to operate in Wales.”