Scotland’s recycling rate creeps up

Scotland's household waste recycling rate reached 41.2% in the 2012 calendar year, according to new statistics released by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) today (28 October).

SEPA has recently changed the way it publishes its recycling figures. The figures are now published annually, and not quarterly as in previous years. In 2011 the figure was 40.1%.

In a statement, SEPA said: “This has brought SEPA in line with European reporting of waste data, which is on a calendar year basis, and allows comparison and aggregation of the information on household waste data with commercial and industrial waste data.”

The definition of household waste and clarification of what counts and what does not count towards the recycling rate is available in the Scottish Government’s Zero Waste Plan – guidance for local authorities, published in March 2011.

SEPA has also said that it has launched a new ‘Discover Data’ tool today, which displays current and historic household waste arisings and management data from Scotland’s 32 local authority areas in a visual format. SEPA said it is “easy to understand and use”.

It has been developed by the Scotland’s Environment Web Project, which is supported by funding from the European LIFE+ Programme, and is hosted on its website.

Liz Gyekye

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