Environment chiefs to be handed powers to block off fly-tipping sites
Environment officials will be handed new powers to close off access to illegal dumping sites as part of a clampdown on fly-tipping.
Plans would allow the Environment Agency to lock gates or obstruct road entrances to problem locations.
The body will also be able to order illegal operators to clear all waste at sites, while even official dumps that break the rules by taking too much waste could face action.
And ministers are set to hit households that use unauthorised waste collectors with on-the-spot fines of up to £400 – while councils will be urged to halt charges on using dumps in a bid to reduce the need for collectors.
Thérèse Coffey, the environment minister, said waste crime cost the economy more than £600m in 2015, including lost landfill tax revenues and clean-up costs.
“Waste crime and fly-tipping blight our communities and spoil our countryside, and we need determined action to tackle it,” she said.
“These new powers for the Environment Agency will curb the rise of waste sites that continue to operate outside the law.
“But we must all take responsibility for our waste to make sure it does not end up in the hands of criminals who will wilfully dump it.”