The long awaited proposals for a Scottish circular economy bill were published on 30th May. There is a parallel consultation on the Scottish Government’s waste targets routemap which contains many of the policy ideas that don’t require legislation. We will share guidance on how to respond to the consultation on our website later this month.
Environmental campaigners have welcomed the move and are calling for strong targets to reduce the global extraction of resources supplying the Scottish economy, and measures to change the way materials are used in Scotland.
Friends of the Earth Scotland says that Scotland’s material footprint was 18 tonnes per person in 2017, which is higher than the EU average (14 tonnes per person). Experts suggest that we can live sustainable, high quality lives with eight tonnes per person, by moving to a circular economy where materials are reused and recycled as much as possible. 82% of Scotland’s carbon footprint comes from the products and services we buy. Over half these emissions are due to imported goods but these are not included in Scotland’s climate targets. This means the environmental and social damage caused overseas by demand for goods in Scotland is virtually invisible at the moment, which is stopping it from being tackled. More information is available on Scotland’s carbon footprint here.