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‘Landmark step’ for recycling in Scotland

Scotland – Efforts to create ‘€˜a zero waste society’€™ in Scotland have taken ‘€˜a landmark step’€™ following its Parliament’€™s approval of the Waste (Scotland) Regulations, according to the Waste & Resources Action Programme.

The regulations require all businesses to separate paper and card, plastic, metal and glass for recycling by January 2014. In addition, businesses that produce more than 50 kg of food waste per week will need to separate this for collection. Also as a result of the regulations, councils will increase kerbside services for householders to include separate collections for paper and card, plastic, metal and glass.

To support the changes required by the regulations, £8 million (US$ 12.3 million) will be invested in councils and commercial waste management firms this year by Zero Waste Scotland, which delivers a range of programmes, campaigns and other interventions to help people and organisations achieve their zero waste objectives. This sum includes £5 million (US$ 7.7 million) to support the roll-out of new food waste collections and £750 000 (US$ 1.15 million) to help increase the availability of collection services to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Zero Waste Scotland is also supporting collaborative approaches to recycling collections, designed to make it easier and cheaper for SMEs to recycle by working together. Pilot projects are under way in a number of areas in central and south-west Scotland. According to Zero Waste Scotland’€™s Director Iain Gulland, Scottish businesses could save an estimated £2 billion (US$ 3.1 billion) ‘€˜by taking simple steps to reduce waste’€™.

Scotland’€™s Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead comments: ‘€˜These regulations will bring about a profound and long-overdue change in how we view and manage the waste that we produce. The Scottish government, along with Zero Waste Scotland, is providing funding to help businesses find better solutions to managing waste. An increase in better recycling will provide the stimulus to drive this required investment and in turn create new employment opportunities and help Scotland become a low-carbon economy.’€™

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