Environmental Crime Management
As the UK’s most respected outsourced provider of Environmental Crime Enforcement, we offer an end-to-end service to Local Authorities supported by the most advanced technology available.
District Enforcement is well-known for high payment rates and low levels of customer complaints. We pride ourselves on the effective enforcement of our front-line officers, who are incentivised through a peer review process, not a bonus scheme. Our transparency and accountability delivers the most effective Environmental Crime Management.
All our Environmental Enforcement Officers must pass the District Enforcement Environmental Crime Induction Course which equips them with legislative knowledge and hands on experience of policies & procedures, conflict management and more. Their capability is assessed before receiving further on-street training with an experienced Training Officer. Only the most elite officers are retained for deployment on our streets and parks.
Our support teams provide dedicated back-up to our front-line staff, ensuring quality at every step of the process. Notices are reviewed for accuracy and body cam footage is checked for foul play. Support is also provided to customers to guide them through the process of making representations and payment. A member of our team is always on-hand to deal with any enquiry.
Wyre Council entered into a pilot partnership for an initial 6 month period in 2018 which saw District Enforcement Limited undertaking Environmental Enforcement, consisting predominantly of addressing Littering Offences and Dog related Public Space Protection Orders.
The initiative has proven so successful that District Enforcement Limited have been retained as partners by Wyre, and will remain in-place for the foreseeable future, as we consider the Management and Frontline Staff to be very effective, diligent, professional and most importantly proportionate in their approach to combatting Environmental Crime on behalf of Wyre Council, and I would have no concern in recommending them to any other Local Authority who were considering adopting Wyre’s approach to addressing such Environmental Offences.
The Rossendale Valley is a beautiful place to live and work, full of rich industrial heritage and historic town centres.
Working with District Enforcement helps Rossendale Council keep them that way by dealing with those who blight our streets by littering and allowing their dogs to foul.
In the 2 years we have worked with District, I have found them to be 100% professional in their dealings with both council officers and members of the public and effective in improving the quality of our street scene."
Litter is one of the most significant low-level environmental crimes affecting the UK.
Litter is perhaps one of the most significant low-level environmental crimes affecting the UK. It is commonly assumed to include materials that are improperly discarded. An offence for littering is committed if the waste is discarded in a manner that it will be left by an individual.
An offence for littering is committed if waste materials are discarded and left behind by an individual. The current legislation that is used for littering offences falls under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 sec 87.
If an authorised officer proposes to give an individual a notice under this legislation, that officer may require the individual to provide their name and address details.
Discarded cigarette butts are the most common form of littering, found on 79% of the 7,200 sites surveyed as part of our recent Local Environment Quality Survey of England 2017/18.
The website below provides more information about cigarette waste and its impact on the environment. https://www.keepbritaintidy.org/local-authorities/reduce-litter/smoking-related-litter/binthebutt
Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs) are intended to deal with nuisance or problems in an area that cause harm to the quality of life of the local community.
The power to make a Public Spaces Protection Order was given to District Councils by the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.
For more information visit the following website:
Offences that fall under a PSPO include:
- Dog fouling
- Violating a dog exclusion zones (e.g. marked sports pitches, play areas, etc.)
- Exceeding a stated maximum number of dogs
- Dogs off lead (in areas where dogs must be kept on the lead)
- Dogs off lead by instruction (when owner refuses to place dog on a lead if requested by an authorised officer)
- No means to pick up dog faeces (if approached by an authorised officer and asked to provide such ability)
- Cycling/skateboarding (in areas where cycling/ skateboarding is prohibited)
- Anti-social drinking in a prohibited area
Dog fouling and its effects
Dog fouling is not only deeply unpleasant, but also dangerous. Contact with dog excrement can cause toxocariasis – a nasty infection that can lead to dizziness, nausea, asthma and even blindness or seizures.
For more information regarding the health effects of dog fouling, visit the following website:
The Care Act 2014 makes provision for the safe management of waste to protect human health and the environment.
The duty of care applies to anyone who imports, produces, carries, keeps, treats, disposes of, or acts as a dealer or broker that has responsibility for controlled waste (referred to below for the purpose of this Code as a ‘Waste holder’).
Failure to comply with the duty of care is an offence with no upper limit on the courts’ power to fine. In some instances, a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) may be issued for failure to comply with the duty of care in place of prosecution.
Definition of a Waste holder:
- Waste producer – any person whose activities produce waste. This includes private sector businesses such as shops, offices, factories, and tradespersons (e.g., electricians, builders, glaziers, and plumbers) and public sector services such as schools, hospitals, and prisons, as well as charities and voluntary and community groups. It also includes permitted operations or exempt facilities that produce waste as part of their activities. If you conduct a waste operation that changes the nature or composition of the waste, you are the producer of the waste. Waste producers play a key role under the duty of care requirements as they are in the best position to identify the nature and characteristics of the waste.
- Waste carrier – any person, who normally and regularly collects, carries, or transports waste during any business or with a view to profit, including those that produce and transport their own waste e.g., builders and landscape gardeners.
- Waste dealer – any person, business or organisation that buys waste with the aim of subsequently selling it, including in circumstances where the dealer does not take physical possession of the waste.
- Waste broker – any person, business or organisation that arranges waste transportation and management of waste on behalf of another party, such as organisations contracting out waste collection services e.g., local authorities, supermarkets, and producer responsibility compliance schemes.
- Waste manager – any person involved in the collection, transport, recovery, or disposal of controlled waste, including the supervision of these operations, the aftercare of disposal sites and actions taken as a dealer or broker
A separate duty of care applies to householders (occupiers of a domestic property), limited to taking all reasonable measures available to them to ensure their waste is transferred to an authorised person.
Under Environmental Protection Act 1990 section 33 anyone who produces waste has a duty of care to ensure that it is disposed of properly.
The registered keeper of a vehicle is liable for conviction if their vehicle is used during a fly-tipping offence.
Investigation, penalties and prosecution
The Environment Agency may investigate if the incident is large-scale, serious, organised illegal dumping or immediately threatens human health or the environment. A private investigation will be conducted on land or water as relevant and may lead to enforcement action. Investigations may also be triggered by landowner reports of fly-tipped waste on their property.
Assess the incident
Information on the following will be gathered as part of an investigation:
- The circumstances, for example if anyone witnessed the fly-tipping, the date and time it happened and a description of any vehicles involved
- Land type, for example relevant land or privately owned
- Location, for example highway verge, back alleyway, railway embankment or river
- The amount and type of waste, for example solid, liquid or gas
- Its potential effects, for example how it may harm people, animals or the environment
Penalties and notices
Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN) may be issued following an investigation, as guided by the enforcement policy in place.
An FPN may be served and enforced requiring the occupier of the land to remove the fly-tipped waste and remediate the land.
FPNs will not be issued for:
- Operators in the waste management industry
- Repeat offenders
- Those responsible for large-scale fly-tipping or the fly-tipping of hazardous waste
These incidents will be enforced by Local Authorities using existing prosecution powers.
Prosecutions following an investigation may employ the following legislation:
- Environmental Protection Act 1990 section 33
- Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010, regulations 12 and 38
- Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010, schedule 21 – water discharge activities
Convicted parties can be fined an unlimited amount or imprisoned for up to 5 years.
If an investigation results in a conviction, this result will be reported to the Environment Agency to enable the review of relevant licences or permits.
Costs spent on investigation of an incident, clean up and enforcement work may be reclaimed from either: The polluter, the occupier or landowner.
Refer to guidance by the National Fly-tipping Prevention Group on how to prevent fly-tipping and see examples of Local Authority best practice: http://www.tacklingflytipping.com/home/1508