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Scotland trials set to investigate range of new applications for quality compost

A new series of WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) projects being established across the country mean that Scotland is once again at the forefront of trialling innovative new applications for quality compost that will help shape policy and practice across the UK.

31 Mar 09

The trials - which are being conducted by Forestry Commission Scotland and SAC amongst others in partnership with WRAP - are designed to determine the commercial benefits of using quality compost in applications that range from soil improvement through to the establishment of woodland and biomass crops on brownfield land. The results will continue to highlight the technical, financial and environmental reasons for specifying quality compost, and will be instrumental in developing new applications and markets for this unique and versatile product.

Due to run throughout 2009 and report back in 2010/2011, the trials will make use of green compost (produced using garden waste such as grass cuttings, prunings and leaves) and food-derived compost (household kitchen waste) both produced to the BSI PAS 100 specification.

One of the new trials will take place on the completed Dalquhandy Opencast Site in Lanarkshire, where Forestry Commission Scotland and Scottish Coal will investigate the use of quality compost in the establishment of sustainable woodland.

Michael Wall at Forestry Commission Scotland said: "Transforming a completed opencast site back into woodland and helping to reduce CO2 in the atmosphere makes a lot of sense, we are keen to see how the use of quality compost could help us achieve this goal.”

Another emerging area that will be investigated by the Scottish Agricultural College (SAC) near Colinsburgh in Fife is how brownfield land can be used to grow potential energy crops for the generation of sustainable energy.

WRAP’s Director for Scotland, Iain Gulland, explained: “We’re extremely pleased to see so many new projects in this series of quality compost trials taking place in Scotland. These latest trials will bring about an even greater understanding of quality compost – and illustrate to those tasked with managing landscaping and regeneration projects that they can make cost savings and still work in an environmentally sustainable way.”

This is the second time Scotland has taken a leading role in developing new applications for quality compost. Ten of WRAP’s Trailblazer projects were located in Scotland, part of a UK-wide programme designed to investigate the role for quality compost in brownfield regeneration projects.

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