Household waste in Highland is around 117,000T per year – that’s over a tonne per household per year. Waste is something that affects us all. Sustainable living means making sense of the goods we consume. At present if everyone on the planet had Scotland’s standard of living we would need the resources of three planets to maintain ourselves.
Waste is one of the environmental issues where we have seen the biggest changes in the last few years. Scotland's first Zero Waste Plan was launched in 2010. SEPA is working to implement the waste strategy and has an accessible waste data webpage, which includes the household waste interrogator.
The Highland community has been one of the most active in Scotland in taking action to make better sense of resource use with projects on waste prevention, re-use of furniture and household goods, composting and recycling. Work is supported by the Community Recycling Network Scotland whose website
lists all the Highland members.
There is a wealth of experience in work that is being carried out from Thurso to Glencoe and Uig to Tain. There’s lots more to do and people happy to share experiences with those who want to get involved.
Examples of recycling/re-use organisations are:
New Waste (Scotland) Regulations has set a target of 75% recycling for business waste by 2025. All businesses are expected to separate paper and card, plastic, metal, glass and food (over 50Kg per week) for recycling.
Recycling and general waste uplift:
The Highland Council: Offer recycling and general waste uplift to both businesses and householders. Collections are an alternate weekly rotation of Green and Blue bins.
Locheil Logistics: (Bowmans): operate business recycling and waste uplift throughout Lochaber: (T)01397 722 218. They take: Wood, Paper, Metal, Cardboard, Plastic, aluminium, Soil and Rubble. Uplift costs of mixed recyclate (blue bins) are lower than costs of waste going to landfill. You can always contact them for a quote. They can possibly run a flexible "personalised" collection service to suit your requirements.
Northern Recycling Solutions (NRS): An Inverness based business. They run collections in the Fort William area. They provide recycling waste collections from businesses as well as offering waste management solutions. They offer a wide range of different grades of plastics and other packaging materials that can be recycled.
Food Waste collection services:
Munro Highland: have invested in an in-vessel composter which takes organic waste material, this includes food waste and green garden waste. They offer food waste collections of 45L-1100L bin collections around the Inverness area. The Highland Council are introducing food waste collections to households and businesses but this is only currently being rolled out in Inverness.
Keenan Recycling: run food waste collections in Aberdeenshire. They may be broadening this out to cover businesses in Inverness. They also collect garden or green waste for composting.
There is no Council collection of glass from either domestic households or from businesses. There are, however, recycling collection points where you can recycle your glass, paper, cans and clothing. These are situated in many villages in the area.
Businesses are recquired to make their own arrangements for glass uplift and recycling.
Biodegradeable refuse bags:
BioBags Scotland: sell biodegradable, compostable bags. The bags are made from cornstarch and are a good alternative to plastic.
Brakes Food: also offer a waste oil collection service for their customers.
Waste Electrical Appliances (WEEE):
ILM Highland are fully approved and licenced to handle and dispose of waste electrical goods. They offer a service to businesses throughout the Highlands.
Highland Recycling Centres
Kinlochleven Community compost site
Golspie Recycling Operation