London, UK — Landowners across the east of England are being warned not to be duped into storing illegal waste on their land. Businesses are being targeted by waste criminals looking to dispose of waste by dumping it in warehouses, industrial units and some open spaces. They can be very convincing in persuading landowners to allow them to use their properties and are able to fill the sites with waste which would cost hundreds of thousands of pounds to clear, ultimately leaving the landowner with an expensive clearance bill.
The Environment Agency is urging all landowners to use reputable agents and brokers, carry out suitable checks and due diligence before allowing potential criminals to use buildings or property.
Kevin Rutterford, Environment Manager at the Environment Agency, said: „It’s crucial that all businesses understand their duty of care responsibilities for the waste they produce, who they allow to transport it and ultimately where it goes. Too often, when these responsibilities are misunderstood or ignored, we see the impact of waste crime where waste is deliberately dumped on land illegally. This can cause serious pollution, put communities at risk and undermine legitimate businesses that are doing the right thing.“ And warned: „Even if the landowner has no involvement, legally they may still be responsible for that waste and that could mean a large clear up bill.“
Recent survey statistics released by the Right Waste Right Place campaign show that agricultural businesses and rural land owners throughout the UK are bearing the brunt of waste crime. More than a third of those in the East of England (39 per cent) have suffered incidents of fly-tipping on their land in the past three years with almost half (48 per cent) of them disposing of the waste themselves at their own cost.
Source: UK Environment Agency