Waste-Free RCV (Refuse Collection Vehicle) Project

Building on the success of the Waste-Free Households project, RoWAN undertook a second RCV with RoWAN bin weighing equipmentmajor venture - its Waste-Free RCV project. Based on the priniciples of the Waste-Free Households project, RoWAN worked closely with The Highland Council to offer a package of support to a much larger group of households in Ross-shire. The group represented the population as a whole and was not self-selecting volunteers. This project aimed to help to achieve the targets set by the Highland Area and National Waste Plans in recycling, composting and landfill for the next 2-5 years. For more information see final report or executive summary.

Communities Involved

There were 4 main communities/routes involved in this project: Lochcarron through to Achnasheen, Garve to Ullapool, Conon Bridge & Maryburgh and part of Alness.


In the RCV project, RoWAN worked with The Highland Council to measure waste over a period of 2 years on a particular RCV route comprising approximately 3000 households. The households involved included rural, village and town locations. The RCV had an on-board weighing system and each wheelie bin has an identity tag which corresponds to a household. Waste weights are measured weekly and the data consolidated to indicate changes in waste volumes.


Throughout the project RoWAN offered households on the RCV route support and practical information to assist them in reducing their waste to landfill. As in the Waste-Free Households project, this included incentives to encourage composting, recycling and reuse of materials which might otherwise be destined for the wheelie bin. Waste reduction and storage equipment was offered to households free of charge or at competitive rates.

General running of the project at local level

Regular feedback was supplied to households, through newsletters and an option to check their data online through the website and so that both individuals and communities could use this information together with the support and help from RoWAN, to accept the challenge of becoming 'as waste free as possible'.

RoWAN worked actively with many schools and community groups in each of the key project areas to raise awareness of waste issues and support local initiatives.

Several newsletters were produced during the project and these showed the fabulous work of some of the schools on the project route to best effect. Many schools continue working hard to increase awareness and tackle waste issues locally and we hope to include as much of their work as possible in future newsletters in our new project.

We also ran regular competitions to encourage waste reduction.