COUNCIL bosses in Edinburgh have cut the authority’s carbon emissions by 60 per cent in the last 14 years – helped by halting tonnes of rubbish being dumped as landfill.

Edinburgh City Council along with arms-length organisation, Edinburgh Leisure, has already surpassed its aim of a 42 per cent carbon reduction by 2021.

Attention will now turn to a citywide commitment to become carbon neutral by 2030.

In the last year, combined emissions for the council and Edinburgh Leisure fell by 36 per cent.

The emissions reduction, released on the public bodies climate change duties report, is largely down to the Millerhill waste reprocessing plant being opened last year – which has diverted more than 107,000 tonnes of rubbish away from landfill sites and being harnessed to produce energy.

The facility is also able to separate metals from waste, boosting recycling levels.

A report to councillors says that there has been a “97 per cent reduction in council waste going to landfill”.

The council has also managed to contribute to reducing its carbon footprint by upgrading street lighting and changing to a green energy supplier.

Council leader Adam McVey said: “Exceeding our own carbon emissions target ahead of schedule is a major achievement and hugely encouraging and shows that the work we are doing to lower emissions and drive towards a net-zero position is having a real positive impact.

READ MORE: Gas heating to be banned from new council homes in Edinburgh

"Our focus remains on becoming a net-zero carbon Capital City by 2030. This is an important step forward but there is still much more we need to be do if we’re to meet this goal and we can only achieve this is everyone is behind our efforts to build a sustainable future for Edinburgh."

A report, to be considered by councillors found that electricity, natural gas and other fuels for stationary emissions now makes up three quarters of the authority’s carbon emissions, emissions from transport contributes to 16 per cent – while landfill waste, recycling and waste energy recovery account for eight per cent.

The biggest single contribution is natural gas at 39 per cent. But last week, the council brought forward plans for all new council homes in the city to be carbon neutral while existing homes owned by the authority could be retrofitted – a key contribution towards the 2030 target.