Illegal-waste dumping: a risk for commercial landlords

Old warehouse

The Environment Agency (EA) is warning commercial landlords to be vigilant when letting commercial or industrial units, in light of a trend that sees premises used by tenants to dispose of illegal waste.

Potentially hazardous materials are being illegally disposed of by tenants who, once their activity is discovered, leave landlords, property managers or farmers to face clear-up costs and possible criminal prosecution.

The four land types most susceptible to illegal dumping are:

  • Farms (34%).
  • Industrial units (24%).
  • Abandoned factories (10%).
  • Derelict sites (7%).

The EA is urging landlords to take the following steps to limit the risk of falling victim to criminal waste-dumping:

  • Carry out rigorous checks on prospective tenants.
  • Check before signing a contract that the contract complies with all relevant regulations.
  • Do not accept the offer of payment to temporarily store waste.
  • Check any empty land or property regularly to make sure it is secure.
  • Stay alert to the risks of waste crime and report any unusual behaviour from prospective tenants.

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