Information

Information regarding fly-tipping: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004


Information requested

1. The cost of cleaning up fly-tipping in total from 1 November 2020 to 29 November 2021.

2. Numbers of recorded cases of fly-tipping across Scotland from: 1 November 2019 to 1 November 2021 and 1 November 2020 to 29 November 2021.

3. And any other Scottish Government figures on fly-tipping from the period 1 November 2016 to 29 November 2021.

In your response to the request for clarification on your third question you stated:
3. The cost of cleaning up fly-tipping from 1 November 2019 to 1 November 2020.

Response

As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

1. Scottish Government does not hold information on the cost of cleaning up fly-tipping. Individual Local Authorities and other duty bodies hold this information.

2. There is not a central database for fly-tipping incidents. Data is collected by some individual Local Authorities on their own databases; the public can report fly-tipping incidents through Dumb Dumpers which is held by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and forwarded to Local Authorities; and Local Authorities and other land managers can use Flymapper and the Litter Monitoring System for the capture, management and analysis of fly-tipping incidents. As a result, some incidents may be recorded on more than one system.

3. Scottish Government holds some information for some of the period in your request and is detailed below:

  • 35,213 incidents reported by Flymapper and Litter Management System from 1 January 2016 to 8 September 2021
  • 5,361 incidents reported by Dumb Dumpers between 1 March 2018 and 31 December 2018, 1 March 2019 and 31 December 2019 and between 1 March 2020 to 30 November 2020.

Under the terms of the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs (information not held), the Scottish Government is not required to provide information which it does not have. The Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have requested because fly-tipping incidents are recorded on various databases by Local Authorities, other land managers and other duty bodies.

This exception is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. While we recognise that there may be some public interest in information on incidents of fly-tipping, clearly we cannot provide information which we do not hold.

However, you may wish to contact individual Local Authorities, Scottish Environment Protection Agency or Zero Waste Scotland who may be able to help you.

​​​​​​​About FOI
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG

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