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02/10/13 10:32

Use less, save more

Economic benefits from resource efficiency.

A new action plan aiming to cut all waste in Scotland by 7% by 2017 and 15% by 2025 will improve competitiveness and could save businesses billions of pounds.

Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead outlined the benefits of using our resources more efficiently during a major speech to the Scottish Resources Conference.

The ‘Safeguarding Scotland’s Resources’ plan was also published today following a national consultation.

The new plan builds on the success of Scotland’s Zero Waste Plan, identifying actions to shift the focus onto waste prevention and resource efficiency – improving productivity and competitiveness.

In his speech at the conference Mr Lochhead said:

“If everyone in the world used the same amount of resources as an average European we would need three planets to sustain us.

“The Scottish Government is committed to creating a more productive and circular economy and reduce our dependency on raw materials. We are embarking on the next steps towards being a zero waste nation.

“Safeguarding Scotland’s Resources is an important step, but it’s success will depend on how businesses and individuals respond to the challenges we face and the opportunities we want to create. In launching this new programme, we want to galvanise people behind our zero waste vision and to work with us to make it a reality.”

Mr Lochhead also announced £168,000 of funding to a manufacturing firm that uses recycled materials, Panel2Panel. The money will help turn plastic from fridges and yoghurt pots into construction fittings for schools and hospitals. Panel2Panel will be based in Dalbettie and initially create 25 jobs.

Announcing the funding Mr Lochhead said:

“The new plan sets out steps to position Scotland becoming a more ‘circular economy’ in the future by designing new products and business models to eliminate waste and grow the economy opening the potential for an estimated 12,000 new green jobs. The investment support to Panel2Panel is an example of how action like this can help create new jobs in Scotland.”

Andrew Whitford, CEO of Panel2Panel, said:

“Panel2Panel offers an exciting new opportunity to provide a new, innovative and practical product (ePanel) which is formed solely from the diversion of plastic and other waste from landfill. The grant-funding from the Zero Waste Scotland programme allowed us to secure the additional private investment funding required in order to start fulfilling our manufacturing contracts. Siting our new operation at Dalbeattie in Scotland, we will be able to provide local jobs and a new facility for reprocessing recycled materials in Scotland.”

Iain Gulland, Director of Zero Waste Scotland, said:

“By responding decisively to global resource challenges Scotland can develop a competitive advantage as one of the most resource efficient nations in Europe.

“Our Resource Efficient Scotland programme is already helping thousands of Scottish firms use energy, water and raw materials more efficiently, so they can save money whilst also encouraging new and innovative technologies and business models to take hold. We welcome the focus on practical action to benefit the economy which is at the heart of the Safeguarding Scotland’s Resources plan, and we are proud to support businesses like Panel2Panel who are making this vision a reality.”

Notes to editors

Other actions from the Safeguarding Scotland’s Resources plan include:

  • building on the new Resource Efficient Scotland programme to help businesses and organisations make savings in energy, water and materials.
  • establishing Resource Efficiency Pledges to build momentum and help Scottish companies take the credit for their actions.
  • promoting innovation and the right skills to design waste out of products and services.

Alongside Safeguarding Scotland’s Resources, we have published our ground-breaking Carbon Metric to measure the impact of recycling and cutting waste on greenhouse gas emissions: