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Corporate Pollution in Cynon Valley what are the Council doing about it?

Corporate pollution in the River Cynon and immediate area and a number of residents have been asking why has Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Natural Resources Wales done little to discourage local supermarkets from allowing people to remove shopping trolleys from their control and end up being dumped in streets and watercourses.


We understand from speaking to local residents they have taken numerous trolleys back to Asda in Aberaman and a number of them have spoken to the manager about discarded shopping trolleys. Speaking to local officer from Natural Resources Wales who has had meeting with both Tesco and Asda but the pollution continues.


If you see discarded shopping trolleys we the public are asked contact Trolleywise a company who have contracts with major supermarkets for retrieval of trolleys.


AberdareOnline received a response from Natural Resources Wales part is below:


 “There is provision under Section 99 and Schedule 4 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (the Act) for local authorities to take appropriate action.  This power is not available to Natural Resources Wales.  You may wish to contact Rhondda Cynon Taff CBC to ask what their position is on this issue.”


AberdareOnline put simple questions to director in charge of Streetcare who is responsible for enforcing the Environmental Protection Act and Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act:


Has Rhondda Cynon Taf Council a contract with Trolleywise?


If RCTC has a contract when did the contract with Trolleywise start?


What is the cost of the RCTC contract with Trolleywise?


What public money has been retrieved from supermarkets for recovery of shopping trolleys?


What has Rhondda Cynon Taf Council done to enforce Section 99 and Schedule 4 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 with reference to shopping trolleys?


Directors response below.


Please see response to the query below, a response was sent in August but it seems it never reached you for some reason hopefully this will clarify the current position


“The Council can confirm once again that no contract exists between the Council and the local supermarkets. The supermarkets in question have a contract with Trolleywise who are responsible for retrieving abandoned trolleys. If the Council receive a complaint about an abandoned trolley in the river Cynon or any other area of Rhondda Cynon Taf the Council contact Trolleywise who then remove the trolleys and return them to the store in question.


“The Council do not have the staff or apparatus to remove the majority of the trolleys as many of them are in deep or fast flowing water, whereas Trolleywise have the equipment for this type of retrieval.


“So to reiterate, the Council do not have a contract with Trolleywise which answers the first 3 questions and if the Council do see trolleys or they are reported to them, they pass this information on to Trolleywise (as they are the company with a contract with the supermarkets) which answers the final 2 questions.


“I trust this information once again answers the questions, which you have now confirmed were submitted under the FOI ACT.”


Did the director answer the question on “provision under Section 99 and Schedule 4 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (the Act) for local authorities to take appropriate action.”

Has he taken action?

Or is the problem continuing?

I think David Brook-Thomas is spot on with his last reply to RCTC

From: Freedomofinformation
Rhondda Cynon Taff Council

13 April 2012

Dear Mr Brook-Thomas

Further to your email below we note the request for an internal review. Before this can be progressed however we should be grateful if you could state what part, or parts of the request you feel have been inadequately addressed particularly as no information has been refused or exempted. This is so as to ensure any review carried out can adequately address your issues or concern with the information provided. The internal review cannot deal with subsequent issues raised such as those in your email below.

Furthermore the issues raised in your email would be better addressed either directly to the Authority's Head of Streetcare for response or submitted through the Council's feedback scheme via its website.

Kind regards

Corporate Governance Unit
On behalf of the Director of Legal and Democratic Services
Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council.

From: David Brook-Thomas

22 June 2012

Dear Freedomofinformation,

I regret to inform you that my associates have completed a survey
of litter, and solid and other waste left lying around uncollected
for many, many months within the jurisdiction of RCT.

Clearly RCT is in breach of its duties under the law and of its
duties to serve the public well.

After all it is expected that the responsible members of the public
pay their council taxes as demanded, and therefore a reciprocal
situation should exist with RCT and its public obligations. Sadly
this is not so.

Any reasonably competent and qualified environment protection and
public health practitioner would have taken steps to ensure this
situation is immediately rectified in order to be in compliance,
with both the law, and public expectations.

Regrettably, I find that there cannot be any reasonably competent
and qualified environment protection practitioners within the RCT
organization, as if there were, the litter situation would not be
as found and documented, over no less that a six months period.

Its felt that there is a need to dismiss the current staff employed
in these areas in order to engage more competent and dedicated
public servants!

Yours sincerely,

David Brook-Thomas