Illegal dumping has been a concern throughout the North Central Texas region for some time and continues to be a significant challenge. Many cities and counties have enforcement programs to curb illegal dumping because the cleaning of illegal dump sites and the prosecution of illegal dumpers is a high-cost action local governments must incur to keep their communities clean and safe. It is an unsightly problem that can affect property values and create significant health issues. These threats have included polluting water bodies from dumped chemicals and the presence of mosquitoes and rodents from dumped household garbage.
Illegal dumping and waste management is no small issue. The Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) is the state environmental agency whose mission is to protect the state’s public health and natural resources consistent with sustainable economic development. They uphold the federal public law, the 1976 Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), which has set the framework for the proper management of hazardous and nonhazardous solid waste and ensured that the state of Texas and all governments within do the same.
Illegal dumping was once a problem mainly concentrated in rural areas with issues with the collection and disposal of waste and a limited amount of disposal options for resident. However, with the rapid growth rate in many North Central Texas areas, suburban communities are also experiencing a tremendous increases in illegal dumping from on-going construction projects.
The North Central Texas Council of Governments, which oversees the 16 county North Central Texas region, has a regional plan, as mandated by the federal governments, to address the management of municipal solid waste. The plan seeks to address the unique needs of the North Central Texas region today and into the future. Illegal dumping is one of the regional problems the plan will aim to address.
Through a combination of solid waste education and training, promoting the creation and expansion of waste management programs, measuring waste reduction efforts, supporting innovative technologies for other waste, and promoting collaborative and public/private sector partnerships the region hopes to achieve their solid waste goals. This website is one of many efforts to end illegal dumping in the North Central Texas region.
What you can do to help
Law enforcement officials need your help in fighting environmental crime. You can take an active role in stopping illegal dumping. Here are some ways you can assist: