Have you ever encountered a used couch mysteriously discarded in a field, or had to roll away an old car tire that has become a mosquito haven? These are examples of illegal dumping, and Texans are uniting in the fight against such activities wherever we find it.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality defines illegal dumping as the disposal, transportation for disposal, or allowance of disposal of litter or solid waste any place other than a landfill or other approved waste site. The most common types of illegal dumping involve items that are difficult to dispose of, such as tires, landscape waste, construction debris, appliances, furniture, household garbage, chemicals, batteries, and fluorescent lights. Violations range from tossing litter out of a car window to disposing of old cars on private or public property, dumping oil or other chemicals down storm drains, and abandoning furniture in any unauthorized place.
The 2019 Regional Solid Waste Grants Program Report states that programs across the state have had a positive impact on dumped waste, including:
- investigations and solid waste law enforcement at 5,421 illegal dump sites,
- fines collected totaling $308,000, and
- 3.4 million pounds of waste removed from illegal dump sites.