Over 1 Million Cars Are Still Being Illegally Scrapped Every Year

More than a million scrap cars a year could be reaching landfill complete with harmful oils, tyres and with airbags intact.  That’s despite End of Life Vehicle Regulations which came in to force in 2003, requiring cars to be properly de-polluted and recycled at licensed Authorised Treatment Facilities.

Government figures reveal just 900,000 Certificates of Destruction (CoDs) and Notices of Destruction (NoDs) were issued in 2006. Yet over 2 million cars were taken off the road last year according to official figures.*

The problem comes through a loophole in DVLA records. Under a system called continuous licensing, owners were supposed to pay road tax until a CoD had been obtained from a licensed dismantler. However, a tick-box on the V5 registration form means last owners, as well as unlicensed dismantlers and shredders, can simply de-register a vehicle.

That means un-licensed operators can act with impunity, plundering valuable scrap materials then dumping untreated waste, without any come-back for them or the last registered keeper.

"This is a serious - and potentially dangerous - problem," commented Jay Nagley of CleanGreenCars. "The rules were set up to ensure car makers worked with the recycling industry to improve recovery rates, cut down on pollution and end illegal car dumping. But the reality is that DVLA records - and a system poorly policed by the Environment Agency - have become weak links in the chain.”

* Total car sales in 2007 were 2.4 million. Between 2006 and 2007, the total number of vehicles on the road increased by 270,000, meaning 2.13 million cars were taken off the road in 2007 (source: Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders/DVLA)

1 May 2008 Staff
 
 

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