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SEPA statistics reveal recycling increase in Scotland in 2015

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The quantity of landfilled household waste fell by 6% between 2014 and 2015, according to SEPA’s latest data.

Official statistics were issued on 20 September by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) which show that Local Authorities in Scotland have recycled 44.3% of household waste collected in 2015. This was an increase of 1.4 percentage points from the 42.8% waste recycled by Local Authorities in 2014, using unrounded data.

Data for every one of Scotland’s 32 local authorities are available on SEPA’s website along with the figures and an additional commentary for the whole of Scotland.



The statistics show that the quantity of household waste landfilled in 2015 was 1.14 million tonnes (46.4% of household waste generated), a decrease of 72 thousand tonnes (6.0%) from the amount of household waste landfilled in 2014, and a decrease of 314 thousand tonnes (21.6%) from household waste landfilled in 2011.

For the second year running, composted wastes which did not reach the quality standards set by PAS 100/110 during 2015 have been accounted for as “Other diversion from landfill” and not as waste recycled. For the 2015 calendar year, the total amount of household waste managed by other diversion from landfill was 229 thousand tonnes, an increase of 36 thousand tonnes (18.8%) from 2014. The decrease in waste being sent to landfill is a combination of increased recycling and an increase in incineration of household waste.

Data on household waste are collected to monitor policy effectiveness, and to support policy development, particularly commitments in the Scottish Government’s Making Things Last – A Circular Economy Strategy for Scotland. Further details on the methodology used to produce the figures are provided in the “Household waste” section of the annual Waste Data Quality Reports.

The figures are accurate at the time of publication, however data may be updated if further revisions are necessary. Normally these revisions will be published concurrent with the next official release.

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