34% increase in illegal dumping during pandemic
LEAVING waste on the kerbside without contacting your council could be considered illegal dumping and cost you thousands of dollars in fines.
Environment Minister Matt Kean said with waste facilities now opening to accommodate most waste and recycling in NSW, the Environment Protection Authority has still recorded a 34 per cent increase in illegal dumping this year compared to this time last year.
"Most people do the right thing and book in a waste pick up service with their council or sell items in good condition through online forums, but some don't," Mr Kean said.
He added that illegally dumped waste can harm our health, pollute the environment and cost millions of dollars in taxpayer money each year to clean up.
Reports to the RIDonline database, which is used by NSW councils and government agencies to record and manage illegal dumping incidents of dumped household waste, were up 42 per cent, green waste and mulch rose by 30 per cent.
COVID-19 is also putting stress on charity stores and volunteers. If your local op shop or charity bin is closed, don't leave your donations outside.
Australians are encouraged to safely store their waste until their local facilities are 'back to normal', or revisit their local charities when they are open.
Goods left outside op shops and charity bins often become waste, costing charities to clean up and dispose of the unwanted items.
"If you spot illegal dumping in NSW, you can report it at ridonline.epa.nsw.gov.au or to your local council," Mr Kean said.
The NSW Government is working with councils and waste operators to keep critical waste services open during COVID-19.