Recycled household waste overtakes landfill in Scotland
The levels of household waste recycled exceeded the amount sent to landfill in Scotland for the first time last year.
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) figures show rates improved at 19 local authorities.
In total 45.6% of waste generated in Scotland was recycled - an increase of 0.6% on the previous year.
Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham welcomed the figures but said more progress was needed, particularly in the cities.
The biggest increases in recycling rates were seen in West Lothian, East Renfrewshire, Dumfries and Galloway, South Ayrshire and Aberdeen City.
|Scottish household waste percentages|
|Local authority||Recycled in 2017||Recycled in 2016||Change|
|Argyll and Bute||38.7%||33.9%||+4.8%|
|City of Edinburgh||41%||44.6%||-3.6%|
|Dumfries and Galloway||27.8%||22.1%||+5.7%|
|Na h-Eileanan Siar||23.9%||24.1%||-0.2%|
|Perth and Kinross||55.6%||54.7%||+0.9%|
Ms Cunningham said: "The Scottish government has big plans for tackling waste plastics, in particular by introducing a deposit return scheme, to further incentivise people to recycle.
"We've also introduced a Household Recycling Charter for local authorities to sign up to, which is making the approach to recycling less confusing for households, and creating a more consistent and efficient system for authorities.
"It's great to see recycling exceed landfill for the first time ever - particularly as the stats are released during Recycling Week - but I think we still need to see more progress, particularly in our bigger cities.
"We may consider further measures if the pace of improvement does not increase."
The Sepa figures show the amount of household waste generated in Scotland was 2.46 million tonnes in 2017 - a decrease of 38,153 tonnes from 2016.
The amount of household waste sent to landfill was also down by 24,848 tonnes.
It is the sixth consecutive decrease in household waste landfilled since 2011 with more recycled (1.12 million tonnes) than sent to landfill sites (1.11 million tonnes).