Paper: ZWTT (2008) (02)
ZERO WASTE THINK TANK FOR SCOTLAND
PAPER BY THE SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT ON WASTE AS A RESOURCE AND THE DEFINITION OF ZERO WASTE
1. The Scottish Government considers that waste should be treated as a resource and value obtained from the material, with any unnecessary waste being prevented.
2. The Scottish Government is committed to achieving a zero waste Scotland.
3. The concept of zero waste originated from the Japanese Total Quality Management (TQM) system for industry and grew out of the concept of zero defects. The current National Waste Plan for Scotland has a definition and explanation of zero waste in paragraph 7.3.3.
3. At the Scottish waste summit last year, David Dougherty suggested that the aim should be zero misuse of resources.
4. The Sustainable Development Commission, in their report last year, concluded that energy from waste could be compatible with zero waste so long as every effort was made to prevent waste in the first place and to recycle and compost and so long as energy from waste plants had high levels of efficiency.
5. The Scottish Government considers that a short definition of zero waste is required, to help the public engage with the concept.
6. Zero Waste New Zealand Trust says Zero Waste:
- maximises recycling
- minimises residual waste
- reduces consumption
- ensures that products are made to be reused, repaired, recycled or composted.
The goal of Zero Waste is to minimise and ultimately eliminate waste.
7. The California Integrated Waste Management Board says:
'Zero waste is based on the concept that wasting resources is inefficient and that efficient use of our natural resources is what we should work to achieve. It requires that we maximize our existing recycling and reuse efforts, while ensuring that products are designed for the environment and have the potential to be repaired, reused, or recycled'
8. Members of the Think Tank are asked:
- What key principles should the Scottish Government adopt to move towards a zero waste Scotland
- What short definition of zero waste could be adopted by Scotland, to help the public engage with the concept
Waste and Pollution Reduction Division
Environmental Quality Directorate
The Scottish Government