Council cracks down on businesses illegally disposing of waste

A Waste Compliance Team has been set up by the City of Edinburgh Council to tackle the issue of the illegal disposal of trade waste by businesses, particularly around communal bins.

The team, which comprises of six staff, a team leader and five wardens, started their inspections on Monday, 5 September and to date they have visited 35 premises - of these 29 could not produce a trade waste contract at the time of the visit. Fifteen of them have admitted they don’t have a contract at all and have been given seven days to have one in place before facing prosecution.

As a Council we are keen to support businesses and will only take legal action where absolutely necessary. The other 14 say they have a contract and have been given seven days to produce it. 

In addition, the team have also issued three, £200 fixed penalty notices to businesses for illegally depositing waste on the street. 

Cllr Lesley Hinds, Environment Convener, said: “Illegal disposal of trade waste is one of the challenges we face, which can cause some of our communal waste collection sites in the city to overflow. The team’s immediate focus is visiting commercial properties in areas that are served by communal bins to identify businesses that do not have legal agreements in place and are using our communal waste bins to dispose of their waste at the expense of the taxpayer. Businesses who have the correct certification in place and dispose of their waste appropriately are to be thanked. 

“We have already made huge progress in reducing the amount of commercial waste being stored on public spaces by businesses and have seen the removal of 80% of trade waste bins from the streets. The enforcement team will help us to tackle this issue further.”

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