Costs of il­le­gal dump­ing adding up

Alpine Observer - - News -

AN in­crease in the il­le­gal dump­ing of po­ten­tially haz­ardous com­mer­cial waste and house­hold rub­bish is be­com­ing a ma­jor con­cern on pub­lic land across the North East.

In the past few months For­est Fire Man­age­ment Vic­to­ria (FFMVic) of­fi­cers have re­sponded to more than 20 re­ports of il­le­gal rub­bish dump­ing in our parks and forests.

A num­ber of the in­ci­dents in­volved the dump­ing of as­bestos and other po­ten­tially dan­ger­ous waste that ap­pears to be as­so­ci­ated with com­mer­cial busi­nesses.

Al­most 200 used fire ex­tin­guish­ers were re­cently found dumped near the Chiltern-Mt Pi­lot Na­tional Park.

And in Edi, a pop­u­lar road­side rest stop had to be tem­po­rar­ily closed af­ter a large amount of as­bestos sheet­ing was found down an old well.

Hume’s As­sis­tant Chief Fire Of­fi­cer, Aaron Kennedy said the cost of re­mov­ing rub­bish and waste from for­est ar­eas was in the tens of thou­sands of dol­lars across the re­gion each year.

“This money should be spent on other things the com­mu­nity re­quires like im­prov­ing ac­cess tracks and recre­ational fa­cil­i­ties,” he said.

The dis­posal of house­hold or in­dus­trial waste on sites not li­censed to ac­cept is an of­fence un­der the En­vi­ron­ment Pro­tec­tion Act 1970 and can at­tract a fine of up to $6,342 if the case goes to court.

On the spot fines ap­ply for lit­ter­ing, start at $317.

If you see waste dumped in the bush or aban­doned on pri­vate land, re­port it to EPA by call­ing 1300 372 842.

To re­port en­vi­ron­men­tal crime on pub­lic land con­tact DELWP on 136 186 or to Crimestop­pers on 1800 333 000.

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