Wildlife Management and Conservation Regulations and Litter Enforcement Regulations have recently been approved. These Regulations will both contribute towards the goal of a cleaner, healthier and more resilient natural environment.The Wildlife Management and Conservation Regulations approved on November 16, 2013, paves the way for enhanced legal protection of Guyana’s vast array of biodiversity. The Regulations are an invaluable tool that will greatly assist in the management and conservation of local wildlife species thereby advancing the goal of protection and sustainable use of our natural resources. It will be implemented by the Environmental Protection Agency under Ministry of Natural Resources. A significant public awareness initiative will be launched in the coming months to increase understanding of the Regulations and participation in actions for the safeguarding and wise use of our wildlife.
Under the Litter Enforcement Regulations, 2013, persons who are found guilty of littering will now be charged. The Regulations will be enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency through its recently established Enforcement and Compliance Division.
The Litter Regulations address among other aspects, litter offences, penalties and the power of the local authority to enter premises and to remove derelict vehicles. In this article, we will look at the litter offences and penalties under the Litter Regulations, while in a subsequent article, we will examine the powers ascribed to the local authority.
It is an offence to litter in a public place
Under the Litter Regulations, it is an offence to litter in a public place, particularly:
1. To deposit litter in a public place;
2. To deposit litter from a moving vehicle unto a public place; and
3. To cause or permit persons to commit offences 1 and 2 above.
Any person/persons found guilty of any of these offences under the Litter Regulations shall be liable to a fine of between fifty to one hundred thousand dollars ($50,000 – $100,000) or three months imprisonment. The absence of a waste receptacle is not an excuse under the law.
Allowing litter to enter a public place from a vehicle whether it is a bus, car, truck or trailer is an offence and any person found responsible for such an act will be fined the sum of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000). If the person that committed the offence cannot be determined, then the driver of the vehicle will be held responsible. If it is a company or organization committing such an offence then it shall be fined one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000).
It is an offence not to provide a receptacle for litter in public transportation
It is required, that the owner of every bus, taxi and every other mode of public transportation while his vehicle is plying for hire, provides in a convenient place within the vehicle, one or more receptacles for the deposit of litter. Failure to adhere to this requirement is an offence with a penalty of fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000).
It is an offence to cause littering from a moving vehicle or trailer
It is an offence for a person to transport in or on a motor vehicle or trailer along any motorway, road, street, alley, lane, mall or thoroughfare, any substance or material in a manner which makes it likely to fall off or blow off the motor vehicle or trailer. As such, it is required that material being transported be:
(a) Sufficiently well secured as to prevent it from falling off the motor vehicle or trailer; and
(b) Adequately covered as to prevent it from blowing off the motor vehicle or trailer.
A person who is guilty of this offence is liable in the case of an individual to a fine of fifty thousand dollars; or in the case of a company or organization to a fine of one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000).
It is an offence to litter on another person’s premises
A person who litters any premises owned or occupied by another without the consent of that other person is guilty of an offence and be liable to a fine of thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) or six (6) months imprisonment.
The Regulations also prescribes an increase in penalty for persons found guilty of repeat offences. Specifically it states that the fines will be double the maximum for any offence repeated.
Look out for more on the Litter Enforcement Regulations, in next week’s article.
The Environment is Everybody’s Business. Let’s Keep it Clean – Do Not Litter.
You can share your ideas and questions by sending letters to: “Our Earth, Our Environment”, C/O EIT Division, Environmental Protection Agency, Ganges Street, Sophia, GEORGETOWN; or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.