New proposals to help deliver ambitious zero waste targets were highlighted in the Scottish Parliament. During a debate on waste management Ministers announced a number of measures.
* to lead by example, the Scottish Government is today signing up to a commitment by WRAP to halve the amount of construction, demolition and excavation waste (which includes waste from refurbishments) sent to landfill. After meeting initial EU landfill targets 18 months ahead of the deadline, it is important momentum is maintained
* to encourage more recycling in public places, the Scottish Government will work with local authorities, business and retailers to ensure that recycling becomes the norm outside as well as in the home, by introducing recycling zones in public areas
* Work will be taken forward with home improvement retailers to reduce packaging and waste.
Later this summer the Scottish Government will launch a wide-ranging consultation on its new National Waste Management Plan.
Environment Secretary, Richard Lochhead, said: "We want recycling to become the norm, at home, at work and in public places. That's why we will shortly be meeting retailers, private sector companies and local authorities to help ensure that the public and businesses have recycling zones - wherever they are.
"Landfill is better regulated and better run than ever before, but we must continue the move away from landfill and obtain value from our waste. Ministers and public bodies will lead by example - today the Scottish Government has signed up to the Waste and Resource Action Programme's (WRAP) commitment to halve the amount of construction, demolition and excavation waste sent to landfill by 2012. The construction industry is responsible for some 120 million tonnes of this type of waste every year and we support the move to help them reduce this amount. Many of Scotland's companies are already making fantastic progress in reducing packaging. We want environment impacts to be taken into account at design stage, encouraging products and packaging to be longer-lasting, capable of being re-used and to be recyclable at the end of their lives."
Environment Minister Roseanna Cunningham, said: "Moving towards zero waste has important environmental and economic benefits for Scotland. Current figures demonstrate progress in reducing waste in recent years, with encouraging levels of participation from the public, but we still have much to achieve. Our key message to all of Scotland is to strive for a zero waste society and continue the good work already being done. We must concentrate on delivering the Plan, which will have a positive impact on us all now and for many generations to come."
WRAP are currently discussing with home improvement retailers what work is required to increase resource efficiency and reduce waste in the home improvement sector by reducing packaging and optimising packaging to reduce damage to products.