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Council / Household recycling rate up again

Photo: Shetland News

SHETLAND’s household recycling rate has shot up to nearly 18 per cent after the full roll-out of the kerbside collection scheme.

The percentage of household waste recycled in the third quarter of 2018/19 stood at 17.5 per cent – an increase from 11.2 per cent in quarter two.

In contrast, this figure was only 7.88 per cent back in 2017/18 before Shetland Islands Council issued recycling wheelie bins to residents.

The final phase of the roll-out took place in October last year.

The scheme launched in 2018 amid a drive by the Scottish Government to better recycling rates, with the council receiving funding from Zero Waste Scotland for the bins.

Previous figures had showed that Shetland had the worst recycling rate in Scotland before the kerbside scheme was rolled out.

Shetland Islands Council’s environment and transport committee chairman Ryan Thomson said the figures are “far beyond our initial targets”.

“We continue to make real progress in terms of recycling rates across Shetland,” he said.

“Our recycling rate was the worst in Scotland at around 7.9 per cent, however given the magnificent effort by the Shetland public to recycle more I’d be very surprised if this hasn’t more than doubled in the first year, which would be an extraordinary achievement.

“We need to make sure we contribute to the national target of recycling 70 per cent of Scotland’s waste by 2025.”

Thomson reiterated that a sorting shed at Gremista in Lerwick for materials should be completed in the summer, and that this will “make sure the council achieves the highest possible value on the market for the recyclate.”