Mayor Phil Goff’s crackdown on illegal dumping across the region is continuing to deliver results. The number of prosecutions has doubled in just over 18 months, coinciding with a steady decrease in the amount of waste dumped.
There have been two further successful prosecutions against offenders in the last two weeks.
“Illegal dumpers are getting the message that this sort of behaviour will not be tolerated,” says Mayor Goff.
“Aucklanders are sick and tired of people damaging our environment and are reporting illegal dumping when they see it happen. Illegal dumpers are finding out that, with council enforcement staff’s rapid response, they will get caught.”
Illegal dumpers pay the price
In the North Shore District Court on Friday, 20 September, one defendant was found guilty of illegally dumping green waste and inorganic waste from his gardening and cleaning businesses. He was convicted under the Litter Act 1979 and ordered to pay $709 plus court costs.
In the second case, at the Waitākere District Court on Wednesday, 18 September, the defendant pleaded guilty for non-disclosure of information regarding the driver of a truck, which was owned by her, after the driver was witnessed dumping commercial quantities of green waste. The court ordered the offender to pay $785 as well as court costs.
Auckland Council’s Enforcement team has made strong progress in addressing littering and illegal dumping across the region. There has been a significant rise in the number of Litter Infringement Notices (LINs) issued. In less than three months, 107 LINs have been issued. This almost matches the total achieved (108) for the full year from 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2017.
“People just will not get away with littering or illegal dumping anymore,” says Mayor Goff.
“Aucklanders are doing a great job of supporting council enforcement efforts. People are continuing to call the 0800 NO DUMP line and report incidents, which helps our staff act quickly to investigate and get unsightly waste off our streets and out of our parks, beaches, and waterways,” he says.
Tonnages of illegal dumping falling
While the numbers of people calling in to report illegally dumped waste is steadily rising, the good news is that community vigilance and enforcement efforts are starting to pay off. Tonnages of illegally dumped waste are on the decline. For the twelve-month period ending 31 August 2019, 1388 tonnes were removed around the region – almost 8 per cent less than the previous year.
“Illegal dumpers are dumping less, which is great news for the region,” says Mayor Goff. “They’re starting to get the message loud and clear that dumping isn’t worth it.”
Container return scheme welcomed as another deterrent
Mayor Goff says that the government’s announcement this week for the funding of the design of a container return scheme for New Zealand is more great news when it comes to tackling littering and illegal dumping.
“Putting a value on beverage containers through a container return scheme is another way to turn the tide. It would be a game changer for our environment and our communities – improving recycling rates, cutting back on litter that pollutes our land and waterways, and reducing the amount of waste Kiwis send to landfill,” says Mayor Goff.