Proposals to increase reuse and recycling and cut waste are being put forward as part of a consultation.
Reducing single-use, disposable items like cups, banning the destruction of unsold goods and promoting the reuse of construction materials are just some of the actions being suggested as part of the draft Circular Economy and Waste Route Map consultation.
Over the past 10 years, the total amount of waste going to landfill in Scotland has dropped by over a third, with the most recent official statistics showing that Scotland met its 2025 target to reduce all waste by 15 per cent.
Following an initial consultation in 2022, the new route map sets out a plan for new, national reuse and recycling targets along with priority actions needed between now and the end of the decade to help drive Scotland’s transition to a circular economy.
The actions complement provisions in the draft Circular Economy Bill which is currently at stage one in Parliament and include proposals for the creation of local recycling targets, reflecting the success of Wales which has one of the highest household recycling rates in the world.
Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater said: “We have already made good progress across Scotland, significantly reducing the amount of waste we generate and landfill, but we need to go further if reusing and recycling goods is to become the default choice for households, businesses and the public sector.
“For people to do the right thing for the planet, it is crucial that everyone experiences a modern, easy to use waste service. This second consultation sets out our priority actions and the tools we will put in place to help everyone play their part in cutting waste and capitalising on the economic opportunities that a circular economy presents to businesses. I urge everyone to take part.”
The second consultation on the Circular Economy and Waste Route Map is available on the Scottish Government website and will run until March 15.
It takes on board the feedback from the initial consultation in 2022, including the ask to consult on the key priorities. The final Route Map is scheduled to be published later in 2024.
An environmental report has been published alongside the Route Map, covering findings on the likely environmental implications arising from the Route Map’s proposals
The proposed priorities in the Route Map are to:
- Reduce food waste from households and businesses.
- Significantly improve recycling from households and businesses.
- Embed circular construction practices – including the development of regional Scottish hubs and networks for the reuse of construction materials and assets
- Set new circular economy targets from 2025, which will run until at least 2030.
- Minimise the impact of disposal of waste that cannot be reused or recycled.
- Promote and support responsible production and consumption (including tackling consumption of single-use items and promoting reuse).
- Strengthen the data and evidence of the environmental impact of actions, sustainable procurement practices, and skills and training.