The High Heidians in Brussels have identified Scotland as the dirty man of Europe having the worst recycling record this side of Turkey. The Scottish Executive, stung by this, have decided to make recycling a major priority over the next five years and may have welcomed the exit of the Bravehearts from the World Cup as one less distraction although I am sure the Tartan Army would have done their best in recycling Bavarian Beer and processing it in great quantities through their normal channels. The Borders are bad by even Scottish standards. All our refuse is dumped outside houses in large recycling resistant plastic bin bags and anything else besides from old beds to half empty cans of motor oil and the environment hygenists will duly take it all away every Wednesday. Huttonian treks a couple of a hundred yards down Kirk Lane with his one (carefully chosen recyclable) bag but then drives miles consuming large quantities of non-renewable resources to take everything except plastic to Sir Morrisons and the plastic to the Coop. That is England of course.There is an 'amenity' centre in Duns-twice the distance from Hutton and invariably littered with broken glass blazing a trail to the bottle bank seemingly only emptied at Hogmanay when the glass is broken by party people long before it is dumped. One plus in Scotland is that bottles once containing alcohol don't need rinsing-the last drop has been drained painstakingly. I am told that the only era of successful recycling of bottles in this part of the world was when you got tuppence back on empties returned to the shop. That might well be worth reintroducing.
Anyhow we have been promised wheelie bins for household rubbish- rubbish, blue ones for paper and even brown ones for Garden Rubbish (as in Norn Iron) Whether people will bother to sort stuff out remains to be seen. In the meanwhile Hutton ThinkTank (Media, Spin and Slogans branch) have come up with a neat idea for publicising any environmental refuse campaign by suggesting renaming the local bicycle-mind-your back-heavy lorry dodging-facility- as 'The Tweed Recycle Track' Might just give pause to the the Big Mac consumers, flashing through the Borders enjoying a rapid short break, who throw their packaging out of their car windows when they have finger licked it well and good. On the other hand it just might encourage them.