England’s green and pleasant land may still be green but fly-tipping on an industrial scale have made it a bit less pleasant in recent years. An ITV News feature detailed almost 1,000 sites across the country where illegal dumping takes place regularly turning beauty spots into eyesores. Sir James Bevan, head of Britain’s Environment Agency, stated that the war against fly-tipping is being slowly won but that seems to fly in the face of the evidence.
Wotta Load of Rubbish!
ITV cameras followed a dawn raid in Staffordshire as part of an investigation into seventeen fly-tipping sites across the county where an estimated 25 tonnes of rubbish has been dumped. Another illegal dumping site in East London is a frequent location for fly-tippers where a gigantic pile of rubbish stretches 70 metres and contains almost 300 tonnes of industrial and domestic waste, enough to fill eleven lorries.
Despite Sir James’ assertions that the war is being won, the reverse would seem to be the case with over 500,000 cases of fly-tipping being investigated every year. Reasons for the rise in fly-tipping are many but the fact that many rubbish dumps have been closed in recent years and the introduction of fees to dispose of domestic and industrial waste are certainly contributory factors. The bulk of the rubbish dumped by the roadside or in rural areas is domestic waste; old carpets, furniture, televisions and garden rubble, but there is also a significant increase in the amount of industrial and commercial rubbish from building sites and factories which can contain dangerous or toxic materials.
Apart from being illegal, unsightly and unpleasant, fly-tipping is a health risk and dangerous. Rotting domestic waste attracts rats and other vermin while asbestos and plasterboard are known to be harmful to humans. Nobody knows where the rubbish originates, what it contains or how dangerous it might potentially be to animals and humans alike. It can only be a matter of time before dangerous chemicals or toxins are fly-tipped and the problem needs to be stopped now before it’s too late.
Spring Cleaning Gets the Brush-Off
Moving indoors, it seems that Britons are not as fond of spring cleaning as they were in years gone by. A recent survey has revealed that 62% of Brits no longer carry out the traditional spring clean while a massive 72% confessed to hating cleaning of any sort. A mere 7% of the population employ the services of a cleaner but 77% would do so if they could afford to. Despite the high percentage of people who profess to hate cleaning in any form, the Brits are spending more each year on cleaning appliances so at least someone is cleaning up!
Bristol Man Cleans Up!
For the past nine years, 47 year old Bristol man William Burnett has been doing his bit for the environment by cleaning rubbish and glass from the city centre on weekend nights. Mr. Burnett is not employed by the council and gives his services voluntarily but has now been told he must cease his activities by Bristol Waste Company. According to Mr. Burnett he has been told to stop because it shows that Bristol Waste Company are not doing their job properly while the company argue they are just concerned with Mr. Burnett’s safety. Whatever the fact of the matter, William Burnett will be out on the streets at the weekend to make Bristol city centre a cleaner and safer place as he REFUSES to give up.