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EDITIONS
 Thursday, 19 December, 2002, 20:09 GMT
Wheelie bin man marches to Holyrood
Mr McKay with his wheelie bin
Mr McKay walked to the Scottish Parliament
A man has walked from Aberdeenshire to Edinburgh pushing a wheelie bin - in a bid to highlight the need for more recycling.

Steven McKay took 10 days to walk from his home in Portsoy to the Scottish Parliament.

The dry stone dyker estimated that he covered 250 miles during his journey, which took him through numerous of towns and villages.

We're well behind the times here and really need to give ourselves a push because Scotland is being buried in rubbish

Steven McKay
He told BBC News Online Scotland that he received support from all those he met on the way.

And he declared that his trek was a Christmas gift to his fellow Scots.

"This whole trip has cost me 500," he said.

"If you divide that by five million, that is my Christmas present to the people of Scotland.

"I want each of them to take a small percentage and think about it, because everyone can make a difference."

The 36-year-old said that he wanted to do his bit to encourage Scotland to move quickly towards the government's target of recycling 25% of our household rubbish.

Take for granted

"People can start now, right now if we just recycle the stuff that's available. There's glass bottle places, paper places and plastic places," he said.

"If more people do that then more will get interested, more will pressure MSPs and we'll have the facilities like other people take for granted in their countries.

"We're well behind the times here and really need to give ourselves a push because Scotland is being buried in rubbish."

Bottle bank
Scotland's recycling record is poor
Mr McKay, who has tackled lengthy treks in India, South America and the Himalayas, said the 10-day walk had been "easy".

And he refused to abandon his companion after the completion of his journey.

He headed north again on a train accompanied by his trusty wheelie bin, which cost him 35 from his local authority.

Scotland currently sends nearly 12 million tonnes of waste to landfill sites every year, but only 6% of household waste collected by local authorities is recycled.

Earlier this year Environment Minister Ross Finnie announced recycling targets for the next four years.

Scotland's councils will have to recycle 25% of municipal waste by 2006.

See also:

12 Sep 02 | Scotland
02 Sep 02 | Scotland
07 Feb 02 | Scotland
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