ONE of Scotland’s largest independent recycling and resource management companies, Hamilton Waste & Recycling, has joined the Recycling Association in expressing serious concern over the Scottish Government’s plans to pilot Business Waste Collection Zones by 2024.
Commenting on the plans, Hamilton’s Managing Director, Robin Stevenson, said: “Introducing Business Waste Collection Zones has the ability to ‘kill’ competitive commercial waste collection services in Scotland resulting in hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs being lost.
It will also mean that all the investment being made by businesses such as ours to process these valuable resources will no longer be viable. This innovation is the foundation of the circular economy and losing it will see us take a huge backwards step.
Competition between service providers is the single most important factor in ensuring we provide value for money for Scottish businesses and means we must continue to develop and improve our services to seek competitive advantage and add value. To claim BWCZ could save businesses up to 40% is, quite frankly, ludicrous.
Electric vehicles and other technological developments in our collection fleets already minimise our environmental and social impact and last year, we saved over 71,000 tonnes of CE equivalent through managing customers’ waste while those associated with collecting it, totalled just 921 tonnes.
For years, the government and industry have been trying to help businesses recognise a value beyond the price paid through the creation of environmental and social value, yet these proposals seem to take us back to square one.
We will, of course, engage with the consultation, but I would also welcome immediate and direct communication with the Scottish Government to discuss the plans in more detail and to help find an alternative route to the continued development of commercial waste management in Scotland. In doing so, I am confident we can find a workable solution that will save jobs, protect investment and help achieve their ambition of ‘zero waste society with a circular economy’.”