Litter Management

We manage litter and street cleaning because it has a range of effects on our community. Not only is it aesthetically unsightly but it can impact on our environment and our health.

Report a litter problem

It is the responsibility of everyone to manage and dispose of their litter correctly. The litter should be placed in the first available litter bin, however if there are no litter bins in the area then it should be taken home and placed in your refuse/recycling bin. In Moray there are over 1,300 litter bins and lay by bins. They are serviced at different frequencies depending on their location and the time of the year, some are serviced every day others twice a week and some only once a week. Duty Bodies must make sure that public land and highways under their control are kept free from litter and refuse, as far as practicably possible and within reason.

How is it managed?

The management of litter and street cleansing operations are based upon The Code of Practice on Litter and Refuse which was issued Under Section 89 of the Environmental Protection Act (EPA) 1990, and sets out the legal standards which every Duty Body has to achieve. In the majority of cases this will fall to us; however it should be noted that transport terminals including bus, rail stations and harbours are the responsibility of the operator.

The objective of the Code of Practice is “to provide practical guidance on the discharge of the duties under Section 89 by establishing reasonable and generally acceptable standards of cleanliness which those under the duty should be capable of meeting”.

To attain a level of consistency we will:

  • provide a cleanliness standard based on land use and time which "Duty Body" should comply with when discharging our duties
  • work in line with grades of cleanliness dividing land into zones according to use and volume of traffic either pedestrian or motorised
  • work within the response times for restoration of zones

Zones

All areas within a Duty Bodies control have to be zoned, reflecting the predominant land use. Each type of land, such as town centres, roads, beaches, railway land, has its own specific zone, and each zone has a timescale within which the Duty Body should return it to a litter-free standard. It is up to the relevant Duty Body to allocate their land to these zones, and zoning should be reviewed periodically to ensure that it remains appropriate and reflects any changes in land use.

Grades of Cleanliness

The Code of Practice identifies four grades of cleanliness:

  • Grade A  - no litter/refuse
  • Grade B  - predominantly free of litter/refuse apart from some small items
  • Grade C  - widespread distribution of litter/refuse with minor accumulations
  • Grade D  - heavily littered with significant accumulations

Grade A is the standard to which a thorough conventional sweeping/litter-picking should achieve. Whilst Grade A is the aim, it is not reasonable to expect that standard to be maintained at all times.

Response Times 

Finally, there are several practical issues which the Code takes into consideration. The time periods given in the table are the maximum response times for cleaning an area which has become littered. In many cases, these areas will be cleaned much more frequently. However, there may be occasions when these response times cannot be met.

Response times in cleaning various areas
ZONE TYPE OF LAND CLEANLINESS STANDARD
RESPONSE TIMES
A B C D
1 TOWN CENTRES & SHOPPING CENTRES

6 hrs


3 hrs


1 hr

2

HIGH DENSITY RESIDENTIAL
(flats / terraces)


12 hrs


6 hrs



3 hrs
3 LOW DENSITY RESIDENTIAL

2 wks


12 hrs



6 hrs
4 ALL OTHER AREAS

2 wks


1 wk


60 hrs
5a BEACHES Amenity Beaches 1 May - 30 September

5b

BEACHES Other Beaches As Necessary
6a MOTORWAYS & STRATEGIC ROUTES
Hard Surface Areas


4 wks

1 wk
6b MOTORWAYS & STRATEGIC ROUTES
Grassed Areas
.
4 wks

1 wk
7a LOCAL ROADS
Hard Surface Areas


2 wks

5 days
7b LOCAL ROADS
Grassed Areas
.
2 wks

5 days
8a EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS
Hard Surface Areas (term-time)


24 hrs

24 hrs
8b EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS
Grassed Areas (term-time)
.
24 hrs

24 hrs
9 OPERATIONAL RAILWAY LAND
Within 100m Of Platform Ends
.
2 wks

5 days
10 OPERATIONAL RAILWAY LAND
Within Urban Areas Other Than In 9
.
6 months

3 months
11a CANAL TOWPATHS IN URBAN AREAS
Paved Areas


2 wks

5 days
11b CANAL TOWPATHS IN URBAN AREAS
Grassed Or Non-Paved Areas
.
4 wks

1 wk
12 PUBLIC LAND ATTRACTING A LARGE NUMBER OF PEOPLE FOR SPECIAL EVENTS

24 hrs


24 hrs


24 hrs

PLEASE NOTE: There may be times when it is not practical to clear the land/area within the above timescales. These may include severe weather conditions, special events preventing access, avoiding damage to sensitive habitats and no available staff  to carrying the work out due to other duties’.  Time scales in the table above are not applicable between the hours of 6pm-8am or during national holidays such as Christmas and New Year etc. Every effort will be made to clear the land at the earliest opportunity.

Litter and Business Responsibilities

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 place a Duty of Care on businesses, as waste producers, to ensure that their waste cannot escape from their control. This means that businesses must have adequate storage space for their waste between collections. To prevent spillage, businesses should also keep their waste in suitable containers, and put it out as near as possible to the time of collection.

Businesses that do not comply with the legislation will initially be approached to make them aware of their responsibilities. Failure to comply in the future will result in enforcement action being taken.

Further advice on how to manage litter in effectively is available in our Voluntary Code of Practice for Litter  and or Events Management page.

Contact Us

Recycling Hotline

waste@moray.gov.uk

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