The great British countryside is being blighted by a fly-tipping epidemic and more needs to be done to prevent rubbish from ruining our iconic landscape, the NFU says. The call comes as farmers address the Keep Britain Tidy campaign’s annual conference held in Leeds today (Thursday).
The sight of dumped mattresses, carpets, dishwashers, old furniture and black bags of household waste on farmland is becoming widespread with two thirds of all farms affected. Last year there were 900,000 incidents of fly-tipping across England – a 5% increase from the previous year.
With rural tourism contributing £130m to the nation’s economy (2015-16) the NFU believes more needs to be done to protect the countryside from fly-tipping and more action taken by local authorities and police to help farmers battling this issue. Under the current rules farmers and landowners are left facing hefty bills to remove vast amounts of rubbish dumped illegally on their land.
The NFU is asking for:
- Local authorities and the police assisting landowners in the clean-up and reporting of fly-tipped waste
- NFU wants all parties (Local authorities/Police/land owners/The Environment Agency) to work together on the issue which means prevention, clean up and prosecution.
- It should not be the sole responsibility of the landowner to deal with this crime and landowners are currently saddled with the cost of removing fly tipped waste.