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Who we are

We exist to create a society where resources are valued and nothing is wasted. 

Our mission is to influence and enable change – from gathering evidence and informing policy, to motivating practical behaviour change in individuals and organisations through our programmes and brands. We also make direct interventions to effect change, commonly in the form of finance, business support, technical advice, training and competence development or communications support.

Our work has contributed to annual savings of 990,000 tonnes of carbon emissions 

Our corporate plan provides an overview of what we are aiming to achieve as an organisation, with our delivery plan providing a more detailed overview of our planned activity for the current year. 

Our funding comes from the Scottish Government and the European Regional Development Fund.

Our work in context 

Our work contributes to the following Scottish Government targets and impacts:

  • Recycling 70% of all waste by 2025
  • Reducing waste by 15% by 2025
  • Reducing food waste by 33% by 2025
  • Meeting 50% of energy heat demand from renewables by 2032
  • Energy efficiency as a national infrastructure priority
  • Reducing Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions by 66% by 2032

Our work supports the following Scottish Government strategic objectives:

  • A Greener Scotland: 'Improving Scotland's natural and built environment and the sustainable use and enjoyment of it'.
  • A Wealthier and Fairer Scotland: 'Enabling businesses and people to increase their wealth and more people to share fairly in that wealth'.

Who we work with

Much of our work is concerned with working directly with others on a day to day basis, as we provide support, guidance and in some cases funding to a wide range of partner organisations. This includes our work with businesses, the public sector, local authorities, community groups and industry bodies.

We also work closely with our main funders, The Scottish Government; and we’ve built strong relationships with other Scottish Government agencies including the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Scottish Enterprise, Highland & Island Enterprise, Scottish Futures Trust, Skills Development Scotland and other strategic partner organisations, and each is these is crucial to successful delivery of our work.

Both these existing relationships and prospective new relationships are really important to us and the work we do, so if you’d like to work with us in future, we’d love you to get in touch.

How we are funded

We are funded by the Scottish Government and receive funding from the European Structural Funds Programme to help accelerate our circular economy and resource efficiency work with SMEs in Scotland.

As a publicly-funded organisation, we are accountable for what we do and we want to lead by example. This is why we publish copies of our financial and environmental performance. 

Financial performance

Details of our income and expenditure and how we use it are published annually in our financial statements.

The most recent statements are those for 2015/16.

Environmental performance

Details of the environmental objectives we set as an organisation and how we have performed against them are also published on an annual basis.

The most recent report on performance is for 2015/16.

What we have achieved

We have led the way in helping Scotland embrace the potential of a more circular economy. 

As part of a collective approach with the Scottish Government and other agencies, we helped Scotland to be named as one of the leading nations driving a circular economy in the annual Circulars Awards at the World Economic Forum in January 2017.

Other key achievements include:

  • Reducing household food waste by 7% between 2011 and 2015 and supporting local authorities so they now provide food waste recycling services to 80% of Scottish households.
  • Supporting the implementation of the 5p carrier bag charge which saw distribution of single-use bags fall by 80% in the first full year since it came into effect.
  • Creating the Resource Efficient Scotland programme as a one-stop centre for advice to businesses on saving energy, water and waste.  In its first three years of operation, we have implemented lifetime cost savings of more than £200 million, avoiding more than 1 million tonnes of CO2e.
  • In partnership with the re-use sector, creating the Revolve quality standard for re-use shops.  In August 2017 we achieved the milestone of 100 stores being certified through the programme.
  • Launching the £18 million Circular Economy Investment Fund for SMEs to develop game-changing innovation and infrastructure for a more circular economy, thanks to support from the European Regional Development Fund. 
  • Contributing our expertise to the voluntary code of practice which underpins the Scottish Household Recycling Charter, setting out how Scottish councils can move to consistent, high quality recycling services nationwide.
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