Metals sector plan

Successful businesses in future will be those that use low amounts of water, materials and carbon-based energy and create little waste. Prosperous societies will be comprised of these businesses. The metals sector has varied environmental performance. This plan explains how we will work directly with sites and ways we could work with them to use our shared influence to improve environmental performance throughout the industry supply chain.

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Metals sector plan

Metals sector plan

The Scottish metal sector includes regulated activities that produce metal from raw materials, the manufacture of metal products, and the reprocessing, recycling and recovery of metallic waste. The sector plan presents our One Planet Prosperity vision for the sector, and aims to ensure that activities do not cause environmental harm, illegal activity is eradicated and responsible businesses operate on a level playing field. It also seeks to support the industry to be innovative and valued as part of Scotland’s emerging circular economy.

Metals sector plan (pdf)

Metals sector plan (flip book)

Regulation and guidance

Regulation and guidance

The Pollution Prevention and Control (Scotland) Regulations 2012 (PPC 2012) apply an integrated environmental approach to the regulation of certain industrial activities, such as metal production, casting and shredding. If you require any further information or advice, please contact us.

Most metal recycling and reprocessing activities require a waste management licence. Information on applications, charges and guidance are available on our website under Waste management.

End-of-life vehicles and waste electrical and electronic equipment have the potential to release hazardous substances into the environment if they are not treated, recycled or disposed of properly.They contain valuable metals and have the potential for reuse (as electronic equipment or vehicle parts) if handled appropriately. Both are subject to producer responsibility regulations that require recycling and recovery through authorised treatment facilities.

The export of waste metals, electrical equipment, vehicles and vehicle parts are subject to regulatory control. Our guide to import and export controls gives a summary of what you need to know. If you are submitting an application for notification to export metal waste for recovery, we recommend that you contact us for advice.

You can report illegal metal activity by calling the Pollution hotline 0800 807060 or online via our website.

Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, the First Minister pledged that Scotland would lead the way to deliver a more equal, more just world, by signing Scotland up to the United Nation (UN) Sustainable Development Goals. These global goals give us the framework to achieve real change, from eradicating poverty to ensuring a good home for us all. This vision is underpinned by SEPA’s own regulatory strategy, One Planet Prosperity, which aims to deliver environmental protection and improvement in ways which help communities and businesses thrive within the resources of our planet.

Scotland’s businesses have a critical role to play in leading Scotland’s contribution to achieving SDGs. Through our sector plans, we have identified opportunities that will work towards achieving the goals and help realise the economic benefit of increased resource efficiency, innovation and resilience.

The actions set out in the Metals sector plan contribute towards UN Sustainable Development Goals 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17.