Julia Lopez, has welcomed new government plans to tackle fly-tipping and illegal waste exports.
Part of wider plans to reform the waste industry, the Government has set out proposals in two new consultations that will clamp down on waste crime and support people and businesses to manage waste correctly.
Proposals include background checks for firms who move or trade waste as well as making it easier for regulators across the UK to take action against rogue operators. The Government is also planning to introduce mandatory digital waste tracking, which will enable regulators to better detect illegal activity and tackle waste crime, including fly-tipping, illegal waste sites, and illegal waste exports.
Mrs Lopez has been campaigning on the issue of illegal fly-tipping since her election in 2017, when it was the subject of one of her first parliamentary speeches. She has highlighted to Ministers the problems experienced by many outer London constituencies, where country lanes have been targeted by those who make money out of waste dumping.
Welcoming the news, Mrs Lopez said “Waste management licences are too often given to what look to innocent customers like legal waste contractors but turn out to be cowboys or organised criminals who dump materials from the city’s building sites into our local environment. There is, unfortunately, profit to be made through illegally exporting waste abroad, or dumping it in gateways, laybys, lanes and on farmland. I am pleased that tackling waste crime is a priority for the government. The measures announced will allow waste to be tracked back to its source and those involved in illegal waste activities will feel the full force of the law.”
Resources and Waste Minister Jo Churchill said:
“Waste criminals show complete disregard for our communities, the environment and the taxpayer. We have disrupted these rogue operators by giving extra powers to the Environment Agency, with nearly 1,000 illegal waste sites now being shut down each year, while our new Joint Unit for Waste Crime is successfully disrupting criminal gangs, for example, successfully prosecuting fly tippers illegally dumping hundreds of tonnes of hazardous waste across the countryside.
“But there is more to do. Reforming the licensing system will clamp down on abuse of the system and new mandatory digital waste tracking will greatly improve transparency in the sector, making it easier to prosecute offenders successfully.”