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Illegal fly tipping raised at Holyrood

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By Fiona Reid
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Illegal fly tipping raised at Holyrood

A REPORTED increase in illegal fly tipping in Dumfries and Galloway has been raised with the Scottish Government’s Environment Secretary.

South Scotland MSP Emma Harper’s question, which followed her motion laid before the Parliament to raise concerns over this issue, asked the Government what action it is taking to work with local authorities to support people who are looking to dispose of additional waste, and to tackle the illegal dumping of waste – as spotted near Lockerbie at the weekend, see pictures.

She said: “Fly-tipping is illegal and dealing with the issue – whether it be through having to clean up the mess left behind or catching and prosecuting those responsible – is putting additional strain on the resources available to local authorities who are already responding to the challenges presented by Covid-19.”

Responding, Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said: “There is a weekly waste forum in place at the moment which involves partners in SEPA, local government, Zero Waste Scotland and the waste sector, to support resilience in disposal arrangements and waste arrangements and this is something we’re keeping a close eye on. Fly-tipping is illegal, dangerous and unnecessary, regardless of the current circumstances, and absolutely should not be happening.

“So the waste forum is part of the process to monitor the impact of disruption on the consequential illegal activity. Local authorities do remain responsible for managing local waste services, including fly-tipping, but that partnership working is active and ongoing and again, it’s about communication as well, about how to best manage and dispose of waste at this time.”

Ms Harper has now written to Dumfries and Galloway Council to ask what further arrangements can be put in place to help people deal with additional household waste – particularly as the local authorities recycling centres are currently closed. She added: “The local authority is best placed to address this issue as staffing needs and suitable deployment of appropriate workers is a key issue in all refuse collection and disposal and I am keen to support the best decisions to be made.”

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