Littering and Illegal Rubbish Dumping
Littering and illegal rubbish dumping pollutes our roadsides, chokes our waterways and can threaten wildlife. It also leaves our streets looking messy and unattractive. Around 14,560 tonnes of litter is generated by Victorians each year costing the community around $80 million in clean-up costs.
The City of Greater Dandenong encourages residents to report any incidents of litter and illegal rubbish dumping . Council has recently made reporting even easier now with out new online confidential litter report form.
What is littering and illegal rubbish dumping?
Littering and illegal rubbish dumping is the disposal of any waste in an area where it is not permitted, including:
- Household rubbish
- Rubbish from businesses (commercial and shops)
- Hard waste - household furniture, appliances, mattresses, etc
- Building and renovation materials
- Garden waste - clippings, branches, soil, mulch, etc
- Cigarette butts
- Shopping trolleys
- Dog droppings
- Feeding or leaving food for birds
How can you help?
There are a number of ways the community can assist in keeping our city clean.:
- Book a hard waste collection before putting rubbish on the nature strip
- Place all rubbish in a bin, where possible
- Take your rubbish home with you
- Remember to always bin your cigarette butts
- Carry a dog poo collection bag and/or device when walking your dog
- Keep a car litter bag to collect rubbish in the car
- Contact Council about the installation of any signs or posters
Importantly, if you see someone littering, please report it using the simple instructions below. Personal, home and business CCTV footage can and have in the past assisted with investigating illegal dumping, if you have any footage of interest please contact Council.
If you don’t see the littering or illegal dumping occur but have information that could help Council identify the offenders, please contact us.
How do I report littering and illegal rubbish dumping?
Littering from a moving vehicle
Report littering (such as cigarette butts) from a moving vehicle download and complete a online confidential litter report form.
In some cases, Council can use your completed confidential litter report form to issue an infringement notice to the registered owner of the vehicle.
Please only submit the form if you are prepared to give evidence in court, if required to do so. However this happens in less than 2 per cent of cases.
If the littering occurs outside of the City of Greater Dandenong, you can report to the EPA Victoria on 1300 372 842 or at www.epa.vic.gov.au/get-involved/report-litter.
Littering and rubbish dumping in the street
If you witness someone dumping rubbish or need to report dumped rubbish you can do this by contacting Council or submitting an online report form.
Please try to provide as much information as possible, including:
- items that have been dumped
- the location of the dumped rubbish/litter
- the date and time you saw the rubbish being dumped
- any identifying details such as vehicle make, registration and colour.
If you do not actually witness the dumping occurring but think you may have information that might assist in identifying offenders we would also like to hear from you.
Council also encourages our community to contact Council or submit an online report form for illegally dumped items that are discovered without knowing where they came from.
What happens when illegally dumped rubbish is reported to Council?
When Council receives a report of dumped rubbish (or is patrolling and observes dumped rubbish) the officer will attend the site and investigate to see if there is any identifiable material in the dump.
Council officers will try and identify who has dumped the rubbish and, if evidence is found, a notice will be sent advising the dumper that they have breached the Environment Protection Act 1970.
A bright yellow ‘illegally dumped' sticker or bright yellow tape will also be attached to the dump and illegal litter alert cards may be left at surrounding properties.
Fines for illegally dumped rubbish
Dumping items/rubbish and littering is against the law as it is regulated by the Victorian Environment Protection Act 1970. Infringements are issued by Authorised Officers of the Council to people who are found guilty of littering and those who fail to comply with any notices issued by Council.
Heavy penalties apply for littering and illegally dumping items/rubbish. The maximum penalty exceeds $16,000 if the matter is prosecuted in the Magistrate’s Court. The penalties are reviewed by the Victorian Government annually.
Dumped rubbish and littering initiatives
Council is proud that so many community members take the time to report littering and illegally dumped items. With the number of reports made to Council continuing to grow each year.
In recent years, Council has continued to fund several initiatives, aimed at tackling this issue, which include:
- The increased use of hidden and moveable surveillance cameras at litter and illegal dumping hot spot areas, in order to detect and prosecute offenders
- Free community Reuse and Recycling Days to enable residents to dispose of household goods for re-use and recycling by others
- Increased rapid removal of dumped rubbish, in order to keep our streets clean and free of dumped rubbish
- Increased litter prevention/awareness signage
- Educational programs which:
- Increase community awareness of cigarette butt litter (#msnobutts)
- Increase community awareness about healthy waterways (stormwater drains and raingardens)
Council is committed to improving the amenity and health of the community with new initiatives being undertaken regularly. In 2015 and 2017, Council’s efforts were recognised when Keep Australia Beautiful awarded Greater Dandenong the Sustainable Cities - Litter Prevention Project of the year Awards.