Review of collection systems proposed by Scottish circular economy consultation


A consultation on creating a more circular economy in Scotland has been launched by its Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead.

The consultation, which will run until 30 October 2015, is the first step in preparing a circular economy strategy for Scotland.


Among the measures proposed is a review of the specific circumstances in which contamination arises in collection systems, in particular mixed collections including glass, food waste collections and contamination of dry recyclables by food, with the aim of taking action against these.

Scotland will also explore funding mechanisms for new reprocessors where supply chains are not fully developed.

The nation also intends to introduce the Scottish Materials Brokerage Service, as previously announced, that will deliver collaborative waste contracts for waste and recyclable materials from local authorities and other public bodies of sufficient scale. The aim of this is to reduce risk from price volatility.

A statutory Code of Practice for Materials Recovery Facilities will also be introduced.

The focus of the Scottish circular economy consultation will be on design, reuse, repair, remanufacture, recycling, recovering value from biological resources, communications, skills for a circular economy and measuring process.

Richard Lochhead (pictured) said: “The average UK household owns around £4,000 worth of clothes and around 30% of clothing or 1.7 billion items in our wardrobes has not been worn for at least a year. The cost of this unused clothing in Scotland is around £2.5 billion.

“In a world of finite resources, where global population and consumption growth are generating volatility and vulnerability in the supply of raw materials, the circular economy approach offers a new and exciting perspective.

“At the end of the day, it comes down to making things last – whether that be designing complex products to enable remanufacture, or quite simply empowering people to repair household items instead of throwing them away, the concept makes sense for business, industry, the public sector and individuals.

“I am looking forward to hearing people’s views in shaping Scotland’s steps towards a more circular economy. It will conserve our finite resources, help support jobs in our communities, improve our quality of life, and it just makes good sense.”

View the consultation at