Impact of Highland Community Waste Partnership celebrated

River Ewe in sunshine
Alan Robertson

As the Highland and Islands Climate Festival (1-30 September) gets into full swing the environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful has published a report highlighting the impact of the first year of the Highland Community Waste Partnership.

The partnership, funded by The National Lottery Community Fund, and coordinated by Keep Scotland Beautiful is a collaboration between eight partner organisations* working over three years to reduce waste and build a Highland-wide movement for more sustainable consumption, in line with a Net Zero future.

The partnership focuses on awareness raising, community events and workshops and behaviour change interventions, targeting key issues like food waste, single-use packaging and our relationship with ‘stuff’ in general. It seeks to reduce waste by promoting more circular habits, including recycling, reuse and sharing and repairing, instead of throwing things away and replacing them with new ones.

Key impacts during year one to reduce waste and promote sustainable consumption in the Highlands include:

  • 147 events and workshops delivered to 1,581 people; including five film nights and 13 climate conversations;
  • 1,267 items saved from landfill, through over 80 sharing, repairing or upcycling events and workshops;
  • 13 food waste reduction workshops and six composting workshops;
  • 116 composters distributed in Lochaber diverting an estimated 12,064 kg of food waste from landfill;
  • More than 100 hospitality businesses engaged to reduce food waste in collaboration with Zero Waste Scotland;
  • 10 Youth Climate Advocates provided with free Climate Emergency Training in the Highlands; and
  • Over 150,000 people reached through our communications and engagement activities.

More information about activity locally can be found in the report.

Georgina Massouraki, Highland Community Waste Partnership Coordinator at Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: “Through the partnership we have been collaborating to reduce waste in Highland communities by inspiring behaviour change around how we buy, use and dispose of things.  The partnership is working to build a more circular economy from the ground up.

“We’ve achieved a lot in our first year and are now looking forward to expanding our programme of activities. Some highlights coming up in year two, include a new programme of online workshops and events, to help reach more people; a number of new opportunities to help businesses reduce packaging as well as food waste; and work to explore local solutions for food waste composting, starting with an in-vessel composter network.

“I’d like to thank all the partners for their ongoing commitment to caring for their local communities and helping the Highlands become more sustainable.”

Emma Whitham, Trustee at Highland Good Food Partnership, said, “Working in partnership is essential as we work towards being a good food region.  The HCWP is a diverse, energised collaboration that we are very proud to be part of and we believe it is a wonderful platform to strengthen relationships, knowledge and sustainable food waste practices across the region.  Only through working together and supporting each other can we create the change that is required.”

Visit Highland Community Waste Partnership ( for more information, to read the full report and to find out how to can get involved in the various opportunities, for individuals, communities and businesses..

*The eight partners are: Broadford and Strath Community Company, Highland Good Food Partnership, Lairg and District Learning Centre, Lochaber Environmental Group, Thurso Community Development Trust, Transition Black Isle, Lochbroom and Ullapool Community Trust and Velocity Café and Bicycle Workshop.