Your waste, your responsibility

Did you know you have a duty of care for your own waste?

We all have a legal duty of care for the waste we create, even after it has left our home.

Section 34 of The Environmental Protection Act 1990, says we need to make sure waste is disposed of in the right way, even if it is given to someone else. More information can be found on the GOV.UK website.

Are you fly-tipping without knowing it?

Every year, thousands of people are fly-tipping without even knowing it.

There are over a million fly-tipping cases in England every year. This costs over £50 million a year to clear. Two thirds of this fly-tipping is household waste.

If your waste is found dumped (fly-tipped) even if someone else has done it, you could be held responsible for the crime

To make sure you don't act against the law, please download our leaflet. More information can also be found on the Recycle for Essex website.

If anyone other than the Council collects your waste, here are some tips:

  • if you use a company to clear your waste or work on your house, ask to see their waste carrier registration number that was issued by the Environment Agency. You can see if they are registered on the Environment Agency website or by calling 03708 506 506. It is illegal for them to take your waste if they don’t have a permit
  • make sure you get a receipt or transfer notice from them before your waste is taken away
  • ask where your waste is going and for paperwork that shows where the waste will be disposed
  • never leave waste, such as old washing machines or scrap metal on your drive or in the street as it could end up in the wrong hands
  • you can donate working items to reuse organisations or charity shops

Watch our fly-tipping, it's not okay video on YouTube.

Are you running a business from home?

If you run a business from home, the waste produced from the business is commercial waste and needs to be disposed of legally.

Businesses and individuals should carry out their own checks to find a suitable contractor for the work they need.

Under the Duty of Care (Environmental Protection Act 1990) laws, you must check that your contractor is licenced to take the waste away and to dispose of it legally.

More information can be found in our duty of care leaflet.

Please see our commercial waste pages for more information.

Contact recycling and waste

Telephone: 01702 215006

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