This content was archived on 15 Jun 2014.


Recycling means using waste materials to manufacture new products. Materials like cans, glass, paper and textiles are valuable resources that can be used to make new products.

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Recycling items is a good thing to do because it:

  • Saves the Earth's natural resources.
  • Saves energy and reduces the risk of climate change.
  • Reduces the need for landfill.

Ways you can recycle your waste?

Recycling Centres & Points – There are a number of council run recycling centres and points, as well as charity donation banks and drop-off points for items such as mobile phones and ink cartridges in all local authority areas in Scotland.

Kerbside Recycling Schemes - Over 80% of Scottish households now have access to a kerbside recycling scheme. To find out more information on the schemes operating within your local area please click here.

Bulky Uplift – Each local authority provides a service for uplifting bulky household items such as furniture, fridges and washing machines. Uplifts can be requested by telephone or at your local office, and may involve a charge. Some council's will pass on good quality items to charities so they can be reused.

Recycle on the Go

Providing easy-to-use, conveniently located recycling facilities in popular public locations will help Scotland achieve a higher recycling rate and bring financial benefits too.  It is estimated that achieving a 70% recycling rate by 2025 could boost Scotland’s economy by around £178million. For information, artwork and guidance click here.

Recycle and Reward 

Recycle and Reward’ gives users incentives like money back, or discount vouchers for returning empty bottles and cans, safe in the knowledge that all items collected will be sent for recycling. Zero Waste Scotland is piloting this incentivised recycling for the Scottish Government. To learn more click here.

Every Can Counts

Aluminium and steel – the materials used to make drink cans – are infinitely recyclable. This means they can be melted down and endlessly reused with absolutely no loss of quality, in what’s known as ‘closed loop’ recycling.

Zero Waste Scotland is a supporter of Every Can Counts in Scotland. Every Can Counts can help you to start, or increase, recycling the drinks cans used within your business or organisation. Every Can Counts offers free help and advice with all aspects of your setting up and promoting your recycling scheme. Every Can Counts will fit in easily as part of an existing recycling scheme, or works as a stand-alone programme. To find out more or request a free starter pack, including can collection bin, click here.