Thousands of tonnes of waste set to be illegally dumped in a Liverpool warehouse has been prevented by an undercover operation involving the city council.
This major fly tipping incident was prevented by the Environment Agency and Liverpool City Council’s Neighbourhood Services team, supported by the Joint Unit for Waste Crime and Merseyside Police.
The joint operation revealed that criminals had broken into an empty warehouse in North Liverpool and bypassed the electricity supply to install a lighting system.
They had also created false site advertisement boards to suggest to members of the public that a legitimate waste operation, including the deposit of asbestos waste, was being established.
Members of the public alerted local agencies to the site, allowing them to quickly take action before any rubbish could be dumped.
Had the illegal dumping been allowed to happen, the result would have likely led to significant environmental damage, including potential rat and fly infestations, impacting local residents. There would also have been significant costs to the public purse to safely clear the site.
The investigation to identify those responsible for this incident continues.
Councillor Liam Robinson, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhood Services, said: “I’d like to thank those who alerted the authorities to this very serious fly tipping incident, as they have prevented a major environmental problem and saved the city council a small fortune in clearance costs.
“The city council has been investing in CCTV to help catch fly tippers, but we can’t film everywhere so we need the public to be our eyes and ears as well. Given the budget savings the council is having to make, any fly tipping we can prevent – however big or small – will make a huge difference to the services we are trying to protect.”
A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said:“We would like to thank members of the public that reported this case to us. Timely reporting allowed us to stop significant harm to the environment and save the public purse substantial clean-up costs.
“It is illegal to leave waste on public or private land which does not have either an environmental permit or a registered exemption. That’s why we are determined to make life hard for criminals who dismiss the law, by disrupting and stopping their illegal activity. We will continue to work tirelessly to tackle environmental crime and are committed to ensuring that appropriate environmental standards are adhered to.
“We urge members of the public to help us by reporting what may be illegal waste activity, particularly where they see large vehicles carrying waste, during the hours of darkness. Any concerns can be reported anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.”