New proposed plans by Defra will give border officials greater powers to stop and detain suspected illegal waste shipments.
This is as part of proposed changes to the Transfrontier Shipment of Waste Regulations (2007) put forward by the government.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has launched a consultation on updating the Regulations, which set out the requirements for the enforcement of the EU regulation on shipments of waste (WSR) by UK agencies.
Under the current legislation, the UK Border Force can only detain suspect containers if requested by the Environment Agency, Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) or Department of the Environment in Northern Ireland (DOENI).
Under these new proposals, the government plans to give front line Border Force officials the authority to detain suspect containers for up to five days, without Environment Agency intervention if a suspected illegal waste shipment is detected.