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Scottish Conservative MSP will introduce Members’ Bill to tackle fly-tipping

Scottish Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser has announced plans to introduce a Members’ Bill to tackle fly-tipping.

The Mid Scotland and Fife MSP has started work with the Scottish Parliament Non-Government Bills Unit on the new law, which would crack down on those caught fly-tipping by increasing fines and making offenders liable.

Scottish Land and Estates (SLE) have welcomed the intention to introduce a Bill to tackle the “scourge of fly-tipping”.

NFU Scotland also called for action on fly-tipping, branding it a “permanent scar on our natural environment”.

Murdo Fraser recently hosted a round table meeting on ways to tackle fly-tipping with various organisations including representatives of Police Scotland, NFU Scotland, the Woodland Trust, Keep Scotland Beautiful and Scottish Land & Estates.

The Scottish Conservatives have announced plans to introduce at least 15 Bills over the course of the next Scottish Parliament term, including a Right to Recovery Bill to prevent drug deaths, a Victims Law to end soft-touch justice, and an Enterprise Bill to create jobs across Scotland.

Scottish Conservative MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, Murdo Fraser, said: “I’m thankful to everyone who attended our round table meeting, which proved to be very productive.

“Everyone who attended acknowledged that something needs to be done to address this growing problem.

“I am focused on changing the law to clamp down on fly-tipping by toughening up fines to act as more of a deterrent, as it is apparent that the current penalties are not working.

“I am also keen to examine how we can shift the liability for cleaning up fly-tipping to the offenders who ditch the waste, instead of the current unfair practice where innocent land owners are accountable, and how to better collect information on fly-tipping.

“While I will still be meeting a range of other key interested groups on this topic, after such an encouraging initial response, I have decided to introduce a Members’ Bill to make the necessary changes to the law.

“Cutting down on the inconsiderate crime of fly-tipping would deliver a huge boost to Scotland’s environment in the year of COP26.”

NFU Scotland President Martin Kennedy said: “Fly-tipping is a permanent scar on our natural environment. Despite recycling centres re-opening, fly-tipping and illegal dumping incidents are still being recorded daily by NFU Scotland members and are a continuous blight on rural Scotland.

“Cases in the past year alone have included rotting meat, hazardous asbestos waste, domestic appliances, household waste, builder’s rubble, garden cuttings, pallets, and garage waste, including tyres and car batteries. Farmers are most often left to foot the bill for disposal - that is fundamentally unfair and must change.”

Scottish Land & Estates (SLE) Chief Executive, Sarah-Jane Laing, said: “Scotland needs to end the scourge of fly-tipping. Better reporting channels, correlation of national reporting, stronger penalties and shifting liability from the affected landowners to the source of the waste are all crucial to effectively tackling fly-tipping. 

“We welcome Mr Fraser’s intention to introduce a Members’ Bill as it is clear current sanctions are not acting as a deterrent and need strengthened.”