The Skye tourism hotspot tackling a rubbish problem

Rainbow, Skye
Rainbow, Skye

People living in one of Scotland's most popular tourist destinations are looking at how tonnes of waste generated in the area could be better handled.

Skye and Lochalsh attract about 750,000 visitors a year - according to business organisation Skye Connect - but residents say this year's total could reach a million.

Skye Connect and Highland Community Waste Partnership are holding an event next week to look at how to better reduce and recycle more rubbish produced by locals, and the thousands of tourists.

Tuesday's event in Sleat will offer advice on composting, refill schemes and also feature panel discussions.

The ladscapes of Skye and Lochalsh attract thousands of visitors every year

The landscapes of Skye, which has a population of about 10,700, and neighbouring Lochalsh, draw thousands of tourists.

Gary Curley, of Skye Connect, said the area's popularity was a "double-edged sword".

"It boosts the economy on one hand and on the other hand we have to deal with a lot for a small island," he said.

"We don't necessarily have the same infrastructure as some of the urban destinations, so there are challenges around waste management.

"Recycling - that's what we are really trying to focus on."

Andrew Jones and Rich Murray
Andrew Jones and Rich Murray have taken steps to recycle or reuse as much waste as they can at their business

Residents and businesses have already taken steps to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill.

Rich Murray and Andrew Jones run The Coffee Bothy in Broadford.

Mr Murray said: "It is hard not to be aware of what your footprint is on an island as serene and beautiful as Skye."

He added: "Our coffee grinds, we don't bin those. They go to different places.

"There is a forestry commission that uses them to replant trees, and local gardens use them."

Cardboard from the coffee shop goes to garden centres for reuse.

Mr Murray said one of the biggest challenges for the business was dealing with plastic waste.

Shona Maclennan and Duncan Macrae
Shona Maclennan and Duncan Macrae have sought ways to make their self-catering business more sustainable

Shona Maclennan and Duncan Macrae, who run two self-catering properties in Dornie, said small changes could make a difference.

Ms Maclennan said: "We give our guests eggs from our hens and use refillable containers for shampoo and laundry liquid."

Amy Bentall, of Highland Community Waste Partnership, added: "Just start something in your business.

"Whether it's changing what you buy, or how you dispose of that thing.

"Start small because it can feel very overwhelming."

Amy Bentall
Amy Bentall said every business could play a part in reducing waste
Isle of Skye
Isle of Skye

Skye is part of the Highland Council area.

Earlier this year, the authority said more than half of waste thrown into wheelie bins in the Highlands could be recycled.

Highland Council said that, on averagey, 36% of binned household rubbish was recyclable or could have been composted.

It said an additional 25% was made up of uneaten food and drink still in its packaging, with most of the food still fit for consumption.

The local authority said 20,000 tonnes of food and drink was going into bins across its region every year.