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This glossary of terms was compiled from a wide range of sources and covers some of the most commonly used waste-related words and abbreviations.

Please select a letter from the A-Z index to find the definition of a term.

A-Z index
Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)
Scottish Environment Protection Agency
Scottish Environmental Services Association (SESA)
SESA works with partners in Scotland`s public and private sectors to implement The National Waste Strategy: Scotland and develop economically and environmentally sustainable waste management. Visit for more information.
Scottish Executive (SE)
The Scottish Executive is the devolved government for Scotland. It is responsible for most of the issues of day-to-day concern to the people of Scotland, including health, education, justice, rural affairs, and transport. Visit for more information.
Scottish Waste Awareness Group (SWAG)
SWAG was set up in 2000 with the remit of changing public attitudes and behaviour towards domestic waste. SWAG aims to deliver the national campaign, Waste Aware Scotland, to raise awareness of, and change public attitudes and behaviour towards Reduce , Reuse and Recycle .
Soil Conditioner
A product containing nutrients that can be applied to soil to improve its condition. Also called compost.
Source-segregated / Source-separated
Waste materials that are separated by type at source. Usually applies to waste collection systems where recyclates and/or organic waste are separated into specified containers by the householder and collected separately.
Special Waste
See Hazardous Waste.
A way of life, behaviour or practice that can be maintained indefinitely, as it does not exhaust any finite resources.
Sustainable Development
Development that can be sustained in the long term, as it does not exhaust any finite resources. Sustainable development meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
Sustainable Scotland Network (SSN)
SSN brings together practitioners from Scotlandís local authorities to share experience and take action on sustainable development. Visit for more information.
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