Scots look to Denmark for waste tips

A delegation of Scottish experts is visiting Denmark this week to learn about sustainable waste management from their hosts.

A mixed group of around 20 professionals from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Scottish Executive and local authorities are taking a study tour of the Scandinavian nation and its integrated waste management facilities.

While Scotland has historically struggled to reduce rubbish going to landfill Denmark has a proven track record in sustainable waste management and is a European leader when it comes to energy from waste incineration.

Over the past year, SEPA and the Scottish Executive have been actively seeking to promote awareness of the need to move towards more sustainable methods of waste management in Scotland and to highlight the range of facilities which may be required when dealing with residual waste.

This includes composting, bio-gas and energy from waste amenities and complements ongoing work throughout Scotland on recycling and waste minimisation.

While in Denmark the group hopes to gain a greater understanding of what these look like, where they can be sited, the processes carried out, issues raised and the potential for energy recovery and use.

Tom Anderson, SEPA's environmental partnership manager, said: "This is an ideal opportunity for key decision makers to see at first hand what could be put into practice in Scotland.

"A DVD will be made of these facilities which will hopefully give a wider audience a greater understanding."

The Scottish party hopes to learn from the European experience of dealing with residual waste left after recycling and composting and how it can be used as a resource, primarily to fuel incinerators, rather than ending up in landfill.

Sam Bond



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