What happens to our waste and recycling

What happens our waste and recycling

Once collected all your waste and recycling is taken to a Waste Transfer Station (WTS) either in Easter Langlee, Galashiels; Mansfield Road, Hawick; or Eshiels, near Peebles.

The WTS has bays for the different waste types to be stored.


The recycling is loaded onto an artic vehicle and transported to a Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Newry, Northern Ireland run by a company called Re-gen

The recycling is processed in a MRF where it is sorted into the individual material types (paper, card, plastics, metals etc) using a combination of shakers, eddy currents, magnets, optical sorters and manual sorting. 

The segregated materials are then checked for quality and compacted into bales. The baled materials are then sold to be used in manufacturing and made into new products.

The MRF separates materials into very precise waste streams producing recyclable materials of a higher quality which have a higher market value.

Sending our materials for recycling helps to save valuable resources, reduces the need to use new natural resources, and saves energy.

Food Waste

The food waste is placed into large sealed skips at our Easter Langlee Depot, Galashiels and transported to Energen Biogas  in Cumbernauld.

Energen Biogas run an Anaerobic Digestion (AD) facility where the food waste is broken down by bacteria in the absence of oxygen. This process produces bio-gas which is used to create electricity, and bio-fertiliser which is used on farmland. 

Sending our food waste to an Anaerobic Digestion facility recovers value from resources, produces fertiliser and helps reduce Scotland’s reliance on fossil fuels.   

General Waste

The general waste is loaded onto an artic vehicle and transported to a waste treatment company called Levenseat Limited  located near Forth in South Lanarkshire. 

At Levenseat the waste goes through a sorting process to remove recyclable materials such as paper, cardboard, metals and plastics which have been put in the general waste bin by mistake. These materials are then sent for recycling. It is great that these materials are recovered but they get dirty due to being mixed in with the general waste and so produce a much lower quality recyclate, it is far better to put all recyclable materials in your recycling bin.

The remaining waste is then shredded and becomes a Refuse Derived Fuel, which is used in the Energy from Waste Power Plant to generate electricity.

Sending our general waste to an energy from waste plant diverts waste from landfill, recovers value from resources and helps reduce Scotland’s reliance on fossil fuels.   

Waste and recycling

Address: Council Headquarters
Newtown St. Boswells

Telephone: 0300 100 1800