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Summary of fly-tipping incidents, enforcement actions and prosecution outcomes for April 2022 to March 2023.

The statistics do not cover fly-tipping incidents on private land.

Care should be taken when interpreting these figures due to 

  • ongoing changes and improvements in data reporting mechanisms and associated guidance
  • the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic; it is unclear which effects are short term and which are longer term, making comparisons between years difficult

Further information can be found in the quality report.

Main points

  • 39,853 fly-tipping incidents were reported in Wales. This is 4% fewer than the previous year, and 14% more than 2018-19. [footnote 1]
  • Annual change in the number of fly-tipping incidents varied across Wales. 10 local authorities reported a decrease, and 12 local authorities reported an increase.
  • The largest annual increases were in Wrexham and Ceredigion. Incidents in Wrexham quadrupled, while incidents in Ceredigion doubled. According to the local authorities, this was partly due to improved reporting mechanisms.
  • The largest annual decrease in fly-tipping incidents were in Merthyr Tydfil (36%), with considerable decreases in Neath Port Talbot, Carmarthenshire, and Gwynedd (22%, 22%, and 20% respectively).
  • 70% of incidents involved household waste (black bag or other household waste).
  • Fly-tipping clearance in Wales was estimated to cost £1.83 million[footnote 2].
  • 27,373 enforcement actions were taken in Wales. This is 8% fewer than the previous year[footnote 3].
  • Of the 59 prosecution outcomes, 93% resulted in a fine.


[1] Following clarification of guidance documentation on fly tipping in 2017, side waste – excess waste placed next to a bin – are no longer reported as fly tipping incidents.

[2] Estimated clearance costs are based on the number of incidents broken down by size. This information is not recorded for all incidents. In 2022-23, size information was provided for 93% of incidents. 

[3] Due to the COVID-19 pandemic many legal cases were delayed, leading to a large increase in reported enforcement actions in 2021-22. A decline in enforcement actions in 2022-23 is therefore expected. 

Background information

The statistics are based on the returns made by local authorities to the Waste Data Flow database. Although some are recorded, the statistics do not cover all fly-tipping incidents on private land, and not all incidents of fly-tipping will be reported to the local authority.


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Stuart Neil

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