While discussing how we could be more plastic free and encourage plastic free aisles I thought what better way than to visualise. So after numerous searches on Plastic Free stats which by the way are quite difficult to obtain I did manage to find some stats from GOV.UK on Fly Tipping stats across the boroughs.

I opted to download the standard CSV file, other formats can be requested but I wanted to visualise that Saturday evening. I chose to visualise using Power BI but could have easily used Tableau, I might create the same in Tableau just for fun 🙂

Having obtained this data and linked to Power BI Desktop I took a closer look at the data, it had location, year and various numbers on fly tipping incidents.

I then exported the locations as they were only boroughs and used Doogal to get more accurate latitude and longitude coordinates. Having exported another CSV it was brought back in to Power BI Desktop and linked to the original data by Location.

Next was to visualise over several pages with charts showing fly tipping incidents, costs that have incurred by the councils, the top incidents, a heat map and a more accurate map with boundaries. The boundary and map charts were created using ESRI maps instead of the standard maps in Power BI as they offer more granularity. The data was only accurate by boroughs but if we could obtain postcode of the incidents it could easily be visualised.

As I wanted to create a short video I decided to use bookmarks so it flows across pages.

The following video is the output, of course we can do more with population, household information etc. but for a Saturday evening analysis impromptu project it tells a story.

Lessons learned;

  • Lots of data is available through GOV and other Crown services, just have to search.
  • One file is never good enough, models will grow and more meaningful analysis produced with other data such as locations or dates.
  • Use bookmarks to create flows and help tell the story.
  • Apply a theme background to create more visual impact.

Hope you enjoy.


Data sourced from GOV.UK – ENV24 – Fly tipping incidents and actions taken in England

Fly tipping by LA

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