New report found that Scots can tackle climate change at home 


A report by Zero Waste Scotland has found that recycling at home and fighting food waste are key processes Scots can take in the fight against climate change. 

The report showed the extensive progress the country has made on recycling and stopping waste from entering landfills in recent years. 


Due to this, carbon emissions have been cut from waste by one quarter between 2011 to 2015. 

Carbon Metric, a tool created by Zero Waste Scotland, shows how decreased waste and sustainable waste management play a vital role against climate change.  

This tool measures not just the amount recycled, but the carbon impact of the waste. 

The latest results for 2014/2015 report that: 

Household waste counts for less than 25% of all Scotland’s waste. In 2015 however, this figure rose to 57% of the total carbon impact of Scottish waste. 9% more than in 2011 

The 5 most carbon intensive waste materials account for 6% of Scotland’s waste by weight, but nearly a third of associated carbon impacts 

Food waste is the most carbon intensive waste material, causing 15% of carbon impacts in 2014, and 17% in 2015 

Textile waste also has a high carbon footprint, just 0.2% of waste, but 4% of waste impacts in 2014 compared to 0.3% of waste, but 5% of waste impacts in 2015. 

Zero Waste Scotland chief executive Iain Gulland said: “Our ground-breaking carbon metric shows that recycling continues to have an important part to play in the fight against climate change. If Scottish households recycled just 10% more of their waste, we would save over 148 thousand tonnes of CO2e, the equivalent of over 22,000 flights around the world. 

Reducing or recycling food waste and re-using our old clothes are simple actions that have a big environmental benefit. It’s important during national Recycle Week that we all take the chance to see what more we can do.”