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Zero Waste Scotland – creating a circular Highlands and Islands

HIE and Zero Waste Scotland have teamed up to kick off an exciting partnership to develop a more circular economy for the Highlands and Islands. To support this work, Zero Waste Scotland now has dedicated resources working across the region to help businesses, social enterprises and communities embrace the benefits of making the best use of the world’s limited natural resources.

What is the Circular Economy?

A circular economy is a universal approach to economic development designed to benefit businesses, society, and the environment. Working towards a circular economy means looking at how we reduce everyday waste, identify how we can better use finite resources and move towards a more regenerative approach in everything we do.

Around four fifths (80%) of Scotland’s carbon footprint comes from the goods, services and materials which we produce, use and often throw away. About half of these emissions are produced overseas where we import many everyday items from countries where the environmental impact can be even more damaging.

A circular economy reduces waste to a minimum by recovering and reusing as many products and materials as possible, over and over again. It's a make, remake and reuse economy.

How can I benefit?

Businesses across all sectors can make significant savings and profits while offering greater resilience. Holding onto value from products, parts and resources creates a more efficient way of working, which ultimately leads to spending less on raw materials.

Zero Waste Scotland has a range of support on offer, including sector specialists, business support service and grant funding.

They have already supported over 200 companies across Scotland to become more circular, from refurbished laptops to a company that has moved from selling lightbulbs to selling light as a service. Check out some of the case studies.

To find out more about the circular economy visit Zero Waste Scotland’s


Get in touch

Businesses and social enterprises in the Highlands and Islands region can find out more by getting in touch with Helen Lavery.

Email Helen

Funding for Scottish islands to ditch single-use packaging

Scotland’s islands could lead a revolution in the way we shop with financial support being provided to eradicate wasteful packaging. ZWS will administer a total of £600,000 in grant funding to empower shops, from Shetland to Arran and all the islands in between, to take the next steps in the war on waste by ditching single-use packaging and moving to reusable options. The fund closes 16 November.

Find out more and apply on ZWS's website

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Who are Zero Waste Scotland?

Zero Waste Scotland is a not-for-profit environmental organisation, funded by the Scottish Government and European Regional Development Fund.

Zero Waste Scotland exists to lead Scotland to use products and resources responsibly, focusing on where the organisation can have the greatest impact on climate change.

Visit Zero Waste Scotland's website 

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