In Environment

Western Australia Minister for Environment Donna Faragher

Tough New Penalties For Littering

Victor P Taffa

The State Government will encourage people to keep WA beautiful by toughening up Western Australia’s littering fines.

The proposed changes will make WA’s litter and unlawful dumping penalties among the highest in Australia.

Environment Minister Donna Faragher said the increases were long overdue and an important part of the Liberal-National Government’s commitment to the environment.

Under the proposed legislation, littering fines for cigarette butts would increase from $75 to $200, and individuals who are successfully prosecuted for littering offences would face maximum fines of $5,000, up from $1,000.

 

 

 

For the first time, higher fines would apply for serious littering offences that pose a safety risk to people, property or animals. This could include the littering of lit cigarettes, syringes or broken glass.

“The proposed new fines would complement legislation currently being drafted to make illegal dumping an offence under the Environmental Protection Act, with significant penalties.” Mrs. Faragher said.

“Littering has the potential to threaten WA’s reputation as a clean holiday destination, and to adversely impact on our beautiful natural environment.”

“WA unfortunately has a high level of littering compared to other States and Territories.  It is estimated clean-up costs for local government, State Government agencies and community groups are more than $20 Million a year.” Mrs. Faragher said.

“The Government last year launched a new, five-year litter prevention strategy to tackle the problem. The new level of penalties is part of that strategy.”

The proposed new penalties are:

 

Offence

Existing Penalties – WA

Proposed Penalties – WA

Infringement

notice

Prosecution

Infringement

notice

Prosecution

Indiv.

Body corp.

Both

Indiv.

Body corp.

Indiv.

Body corp.

Cigarette butt

$75

N/A

$1,000

$200

$500

$5,000

$5,000

General littering

$200

N/A

$1,000

$200

$500

$5,000

$5,000

Littering that creates a public risk

N/A

N/A

N/A

$500

$2,000

$5,000

$10,000

Unlawful dumping (EP Act)

N/A

N/A

N/A

$5,000

$5,000

$62,500

$125,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Minister said the 2009 Rubbish Report released earlier this year by the Keep Australia Beautiful Council revealed WA led the country in discarded cigarette butts, accounting for 30 % of total rubbish items.

It also found Perth beaches had more litter than other States.

Mrs. Faragher said amendments to the Litter Act would now be drafted, to be introduced into State Parliament later this year. 

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