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National Waste Strategy

In 1999, driven by a combination of European Legislation, environmental pressures and public expectation, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) published the National Waste Strategy for Scotland (NWS).

The NWS sets out a framework within which Scotland can reduce the amount of waste it produces and deal with the waste that is produced in a more sustainable way. It covers all household, commercial and industrial waste.

The NWS is based on the principle of sustainable development, ie to encourage more efficient use of resources, to minimise waste and to recover greater value from the waste that we do produce. It outlines the key European and UK legislation that is driving the process and notes the key players that will enable Scotland to meet its landfill diversion and recycling targets.

Click here to find out more and access the National Waste Strategy document.
National Waste Plan

Following extensive research and consultation by SEPA in partnership with local authorities, the waste industry and community groups, the National Waste Plan (NWP) was published in 2003. The NWP is the keystone to implementing the National Waste Strategy. It outlines how Scotland can achieve increased levels of recycling and an overall reduction in the amount of waste we produce by 2020.

Most of our waste in Scotland is sent to landfill, which means that valuable resources are lost. This is not a sustainable method of managing our waste in the long term, as the space available for landfill in Scotland is finite. Landfill sites are also a source of greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change. The National Waste Plan aims to reduce our dependence on a landfill as a means of waste disposal and outlines how we can move towards a culture of reducing, reusing and recycling our waste.

The National Waste Plan sets the following targets for waste reduction and recycling in Scotland:
  • By 2006 - recycle or compost 25% of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW)
  • By 2008 - recycle or compost 30% of MSW
  • By 2010 - stop the annual increase in the amount of waste produced
  • By 2020 - collect waste materials for recycling from 90% of households
  • By 2020 - recycle or compost 50% of MSW
Changing public attitudes to waste and resource use issues is crucial to the success of the National Waste Plan. The Waste Aware Scotland campaign supports the implementation of the Plan and local campaigns are being matched to real infrastructure, providing the public with a direct means for taking action.

As the basis for the National Waste Plan, each Waste Strategy Area produced an Area Waste Plan to outline how they will meet these targets locally. You can find out more about this in Your Area.

Click here to find out more and access the National Waste Plan document.


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