The NFU has responded to the Defra consultation which looks at updating the guidance regarding householders' duty of care when it comes to handling household waste responsibly.
Our response to the consultation, which members can read here, highlights the following:
- Two-thirds of our members are affected by fly-tipping and any changes which could reduce the number of incidents of this crime could potentially reduce the burden of handling and dealing with waste that has been fly-tipped on their land;
- The guidance created needs to be as user-friendly as possible to have the maximum impact.
- The majority of our members create and handle waste on a daily basis and could therefore be directly impacted by the proposed Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) if on household waste rates.
The guidance also outlines that Local Authorities will soon have the power to issue FPN for those householders who do not comply with this duty of care. The FPN ranges from £120 - £400 depending on Local Authority discretion.
Householders already have a duty of care to take reasonable steps to ensure their waste is passed to an authorised person. Currently the only option for the regulator (usually the local authority in this case) to address breaches of the duty of care is to take the offender to court.
The NFU has noted that whilst the guidance drafted is thorough and needed, it is not clear or user-friendly.