A number of improvements to existing legislation dealing with litter were made under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005, including the introduction of greater powers for local authorities in issuing fixed penalty notices and litter clearing notices. This was complemented by new guidance on the legislation and revision of the statutory “Code of Practice on Litter and Refuse”.
Improving the toolkit of powers and guidance available to local authorities will help them tackle local environmental quality issues more effectively. In addition, ENCAMS (Environmental Campaigns), which is grant-funded by DEFRA, runs the “Keep Britain Tidy” campaign and carries out a number of public awareness campaigns aimed at changing behaviour. Recent campaigns have focused on youth littering and smoking-related litter.
In addition to increasing the range and flexibility of enforcement options for local authorities, work is being taken forward on improving the provision of skills in relation to street cleansing and related services. A Local Environmental Management training and skills framework is being developed which will ensure that specific, tailored training and qualifications are available to the industry from operational level to senior management and play a key role in enabling local authorities to increase the effectiveness of their litter clearance, as well as other services they provide.
The Landfill (England and Wales) Regulations 2002 (as amended) regulate the disposal of waste in landfill sites. The Regulations transpose the requirements of the Landfill Directive, reducing the negative effects of landfilling on the environment and any resultant risk to human health. A copy of the 2002 Regulations (SI No. 1559) and its subsequent amendment Regulations (SI Nos.1375 and 1640) can be obtained from the Office of Public Sector Information at http://www.opsi.gov.uk/.