Wednesday, 30 October 2013


This in our local newspaper makes for interesting reading.

This borough, Medway, remains at the numerical top of the the table of Kent boroughs/districts for fly-tipping, as a result of a recent sharp increase in reported incidents – incorrectly termed 'sites' in the article's text, but correctly cited as reports in the table there. Many of the reports will be for sites already cited in other reports. Notice that three other areas have had greater percentage increases than Medway over the same period, in two of those cases much higher percentages.

The two reasons for this stated in the article agree with my own local knowledge and intelligence sources: (a) the Kent County Council (KCC) decision to stop taking commercial waste at its household waste site, and (b) the improved reporting made easier by the Love Medway 'phone app. The former is bad news, whereas the latter is good as it means that more such dumpings are being cleared up and faster as a result. I think we all want that.

How to solve it remains a significant issue, and one that probably has no realistic prospect of being solved any time soon – merely discouraged as (hopefully) more of the perpetrators are caught and prosecuted. I suspect that Medway will one day decide that it would be better to make its own provisions for taking the commercial waste that is no longer being accepted by KCC's own site.

Even that won't get rid of the problem in Medway, but it should significantly reduce it and leave less of an incentive to fly-tip here.

Why here anyway? I suspect that it's largely down to the easy road access to so many of our more secluded spots, especially on the peninsula. Although other parts of Kent obviously have many locations of the same type, I have noticed in my travels around the county that at least some of these are not so accessible, especially to larger vehicles such as those that could carry some of the dumped materials shown in the photos in the linked article.

.Another point of interest regarding the Medway figures is that they are both a fair amount lower than what is called the 'baseline' figure from 2005. Even this past year's big number is still 29% down on the 2005 figure – which goes to show how easy it can be 'manufacture' headlines that are misleading. Perhaps the article's table ought to covered a wider time period...

Regardless, it's still quite a big problem everywhere in Kent and, no doubt, just about everywhere else in the country. It will disappear only when matter-to-energy conversion technology is developed (as it should by rights have been decades ago) so that need be no more waste to dispose of, ever again.

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