What is Illegal Dumping?
Illegal dumping is the intentional disposal of waste onto any public or private land without legal permission. It’s also known as “open dumping”, “fly dumping”, and “midnight dumping”. Illegally dumped wastes are primarily non-hazardous materials that are dumped to avoid either waste-handling fees or the efforts required for proper disposal.
Be it a public area or private space, illegal dumping is a felony and should always be reported to the local authorities.
Why is Illegal Dumping a Problem?
The health and environmental risks associated with illegal dumping are significant. Some of the risks are listed below:
- Exposure to trash may affect human health.
- Rodents, insects, etc. attracted to dump sites may also pose health risks to the community settled in the vicinity.
- Scrap tires at dumpsites act as a breeding ground for mosquitoes, which can multiply 100 times faster than normal in the warm, standing water in scrap tire casings.
- The waste may pollute waterways.
- It degrades land value.
- Illegal dumping can impact the drainage system, making areas more vulnerable to flooding when debris blocks culverts, creeks, and drainage basins.
How does Illegal Dumping Affect the Environment?
When the waste is dumped into the environment, there are a variety of potential risks for the land and animals nearby. The scope of the impact may not always be obvious and could take some time to present itself. Some of its effects are:
- Soil and water become contaminated.
- Wildlife is disrupted.
- Risk of natural disasters increases.