Deliberately abandoned or dumped waste on public or private property is considered illegal dumping.
Illegal dumping is harmful to the environment, costs taxpayers over a million dollars each year, and sends a message that illegal activity is tolerated in our neighbourhoods.
All residents and businesses are responsible for properly disposing of their waste.
Report illegal dumping
How City staff handle complaints about illegally dumped garbage depends on whether the dumping was witnessed or not.
Help us keep your neighbourhood clean and safe by properly reporting all incidents of abandoned garbage or witnessed illegal dumping.
Illegal dumping on private property
Phone the Vancouver Police Department's non-emergency line: 604-717-3321.
We are taking steps to prevent illegal dumping. Offenders can be fined between $100 to $10,000 under the Street and Traffic Bylaw.
Reporting and prevention tips
Before you report it
If you witness someone illegally dumping waste on City property, write down as much information as you can, including:
- Licence plate number
- Descriptions of the:
- Items being dumped (do not touch or disturb items)
- Date and time of the incident
- Location of the incident
To report illegal dumping, you must be willing to complete and sign a witness statement.
After you make a report
- We create a file specifying your concerns.
- A bylaw officer investigates your complaint within 4 business days.
- Depending on the situation, the officer may:
- Contact you to discuss completing a witness statement
- Contact the alleged offender
- Secure the area as 'under investigation'
- Canvass the neighbourhood for additional witnesses or evidence
- Issue a notice with directions to remedy the problem within a specified time frame
- Take steps to impose a penalty for illegal dumping
- If the officer believes there is insufficient evidence to connect an offender to the illegal dumping, the file may be closed.
Illegal dumping is an offence under the Street and Traffic By-Law 2849.
We respond and take action when illegal dumping occurs on City property.
A person or the registered owner of vehicle caught illegally dumping material may have to:
- Remove the waste and restore the area
- Repay the City for removing the waste and restoring the area
- Pay a bylaw ticket ranging from $100 to $500 per offence
- Face prosecution leading to a fine of up to $10,000
Prevent illegal dumping
If you manage or own a building and there is repeated illegal dumping on your street or in your lane, we suggest you:
- Ensure building occupants are properly disposing of their own waste, particularly when moving out
- Store waste containers in a location that is not visible from the street or lane
- If your waste containers are visible from the street or lane, ensure containers are secured and the area kept clean and tidy
- Install security cameras
- Request "No Dumping" signs for your property by emailing SWM.Permits@vancouver.ca.
Know where to recycle
Dispose of all waste properly using garbage, recycling, and green bin containers.
If you have an item that we don't collect:
- Check the Waste Wizard to see how to dispose of items properly
- Donate the item to charity (check with organization to ensure they will accept the item and drop off during operating hours)
- Bring the item to the Vancouver Landfill or Vancouver South Transfer Station
- Use the Metro Vancouver website to find where you can recycle an item
By properly disposing of your waste, you help to keep Vancouver’s streets, parks, and green spaces clean, vibrant, and spectacular.