12 C
Byron Shire
June 21, 2021

Illegal dumping costs $100,000 a year

Latest News

Vaccine passports

David Warth, Byron Bay Vaccine passports, aka certificates, are now sitting in the wings waiting to be taken up by state...

Other News

Pro rail trail association urges Council to award construction tender

Representatives from the Northern Rivers Rail Trail Association are urging Tweed Shire Council to award the construction tender for the Murwillumbah to Crabbes Creek section of the corridor at this week’s Council meeting.

Backsliders coming to Lennox

Australian music legends the Backsliders are coming to Lennox Head for the first time, to play at the Lennox Head Cultural Centre on Saturday 26 June 2021.

Will Multiple Occupancies rise again in Byron?

Could Multiple Occupancy housing developments be reintroduced in the Byron Shire as a way of addressing the growing housing crisis?

More bullying stories emerge in Lismore

Since local woman Sally Flannery decided to quit the Lismore City Council race, more stories of harassment and attacks have emerged, affecting councillors and others across the political spectrum.

Healthy Minds Club powering ahead

Since The Echo last spoke to Lennox Head's Jackson Connellan, from The Healthy Minds Club, things have become even...

You Can Close Your Eyes

There is a beautiful James Taylor song (‘You Can Close Your Eyes’) that commences with the words; Oh, the sun is surely sinking down, But the moon is slowly rising. 

With more than 700 recorded incidents of illegal dumping totalling 478 tonnes in 2016/17, the cost to council is more than $100,000 a year.

Byron Shire Council has ramped up its campaign targeting illegal dumping with surveillance and monitoring of ‘hotspot’ areas now underway.

Staff are patrolling suburbs looking for illegal dumping and rubbish left on kerbsides, or footpaths, and in public areas.

Council’s Waste Education and Compliance Officer Kate Akkerman, says that illegal dumping is a significant issue in the Byron Shire.

‘In 2016/17 we recorded more than 700 incidents of illegal dumping of all sorts of things including household rubbish, furniture, mattresses and garden waste,’ she said.

‘Cleaning up rubbish from public areas is costing Council more than $100,000 and that money could be better spent on community projects.

Ms Akkerman says the as well as increased monitoring and surveillance of certain areas, council are expanding their use of surveillance cameras, improving lighting and installing gates in some locations.

‘People can be fined up to $8,000 for leaving rubbish on the footpath,’ she said.

Ms Akkerman says the most frequently asked question is why we don’t have an annual kerbside bulky waste collection service. ‘While we have offered this service in the past in Byron Shire, it actually led to more illegal dumping.

‘People were dumping rubbish in large public piles and leaving rubbish on the kerbside for months and it was not only ugly, it was dangerous for pedestrians and harboured vermin such as rats and mice.

‘It also resulted in the risk of pollution of waterways and the natural environment.’

All councils in the Northern Rivers, and many councils across NSW have stopped offering kerbside collection services for these reasons.

‘We now instead offer people a free annual drop-off of up to 150kg of bulk waste and 500kg of green waste at the Myocum Byron Resource and Recovery Centre in Myocum,’ said Ms Akkerman.

‘We are also encouraging our community to try and reduce the volume, and take responsibility for, the waste we generate. This can achieved through buying furniture/items that are made to last, or by selling, reusing or donating old items that still have life left in them’

Byron Shire Council has received a $79,000 grant from the NSW Environment Protection Authority funded by the Waste Levy to help combat illegal dumping and this will be used for a range of programs including education campaigns.

‘We are working with local real estate offices and they will be giving our “waste education packs” to new and existing tenants so they have information about our waste and recycling services and how to get access to a our annual free drop-off service of up to 150kg of bulk waste.

‘We have set a goal of reducing the number of illegal dumping incidents in the Byron Shire by 30% by 2020 so this is something that we will be working hard on for the next several years,’ she said.

People wanting to report illegal dumping should call 6626 7000 or go to www.ridonline.edpa.gov.au.

Illegal Dumping Facts

• In 2016/17 there was 468 tonnes of illegally dumped waste found in the Byron Shire.

• Illegal dumping costs Council more than $100,000/year

• The dumping of green waste spreads weeds and exotic species into public reserves, dunes, bushland and parks.

• Rubbish dumped on footpaths and in bushland attracts vermin and is dangerous to pedestrians.

• Byron Shire Council has a goal of reducing illegal dumping incidents by 30% by 2020.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


  1. Until there is a cost put on items when they are purchased there will always be illegal dumping when it costs $170 a tonne for mixed general waste at the shire tip.It would be much easier to charge waste levy when people want something then when the no longer want it Then all waste could be taken to the dump free of charge.it could be fee based on how easy it is to recycle or not.Or increase the GST to cover it and the more you buy the more you pay so it would be not unfair to rich or poor.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Failure after failure

Keith Duncan, Pimlico One policy failure after another; what does it take for ‘shifty’ Morrison to come clean, show leadership, and finally accept responsibility? He had three...

New case of COVID-19 in Brisbane

Queensland has recorded one new case of COVID-19 in the community yesterday, with contact tracing underway after an international cabin crew member tested positive.

Mental health workshop for girls in Lennox

The mental health organisation Beautiful Minds is holding a one day workshop for pre-teen girls in Lennox Head on Sunday 27 June 2021.

Morrison’s craven cave to the QAnon cult – can he squirm out of this one too?

Monday night’s Four Corners program on ABC explained that two Australian lackeys of the American cult called QAnon – Tim Stewart and his son Jesse – are pushing the cult’s terrible excuse for a belief system.