The second SWEAP Inspectors Exchange took place 14-16 November 2018 in Scotland. The Scottish Environment Agency SEPA, hosted law enforcement officers and inspectors from the the Swedish County Administrative Board of Norrbotten and Norwegian Customs. The work took place at Grangemouth Port, Cairnryan Port and African waste sites (Glasgow).
The main goal was to exchange knowledge by comparing structural differences in the competent authorities and by comparing the way that physical inspections are carried out and gain best practice from these inspections. The group also looked at physical inspections of containers and trailers in both of the ports, where they discussed selection methods, cooperation with other agencies on site and also tools in order to perform the physical inspections of containers and trailers. Furthermore legal actions and possibilities and issues with the current EU legislation and national legislation were discussed.
Another goal was to involve The County Administrative Board of Norrbottens largest cooperating authority, which is Norwegian Customs. They operate on the Swedish side of the border as well as on the Norwegian side. Including them in the exchange, created the opportunity to educate them in the various waste streams that exist in Europe and help the to gain knowledge on parameters for waste crime, which can support them improving their detection rate of waste crime at the border. This was done, among other things, by interacting with Port Police in Cairnryan who have a similar function as the Customs. The information gained by the representative for the Norwegian Customs was spread within their organisation in after returning from the exchange.
The third goal was to acquire more knowledge from SEPA on African exports that are common in Scotland. Waste site inspections and learning from SEPA’s approach have the County Administrative Board of Norrbotten new ideas on how to tackle the problem that is growing in the north.
Lastly, the team at differences in intelligence gathering and how the different countries work with these issues. Information was shared on some cases that are connected to both countries and discussed how to solidify cooperation between TFS agencies and law enforcement agencies between the counties by establishing contacts.