Food waste used to construct Commonwealth Games venues

Scottish food waste has been transformed into compost and used in the development of Commonwealth Games venues in Glasgow, according to Zero Waste Scotland.

The food waste was collected with garden waste from households in Glasgow City, East Renfrewshire and South Lanarkshire. The recycled waste has also been used in the development of Glasgow 2014’s Athletes Village.

According to Zero Waste Scotland, some of the 50,000 tonnes of food and garden waste that is sent to GP Plantscape’s in-vessel composting (IVC) facility in Blantyre every year has been used to help develop the facilities.

It is currently being used to feed the turf at the Athletes’ Village in Dalmarnock, as well as at some of the sporting arenas.

The Athletes Village has been designed to be energy efficient with photovoltaic panels on the houses and a combined heat and power system.

Organisers of the Commonwealth Games hope the event will be “sustainable” and have committed to minimise the amount of waste sent to landfill (diversion rate of 80%) and to recycle as much as possible.

Zero Waste Scotland director Iain Gulland said: “Scottish householders dispose of over half a million tonnes of food and drink each year. When sent to landfill this food decomposes and releases harmful greenhouse gases.

“Around 57% of households in Scotland now have access to a food waste recycling service, allowing this waste to be transformed into a valuable resource, as we can see from its use at the Athletes Village.

“The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games is a great opportunity for Scotland to host a truly sustainable green event, projecting a lasting legacy to be proud of, and as such it’s great to see this valuable material being used in such as efficient way.”

Glasgow 2014 environment and sustainability manager Gareth Talbot added: “The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games is aiming to be a truly sustainable event, rooted in Scotland.

“To be able to use household food waste, collected and responsibly recycled by householders all across the west of Scotland, and turn that via composting into the very turf on which athletes will be staying and competing at these very special games, is a great example of the way we’ve embedded sustainability in the games’ organisation.”

Liz Gyekye

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