There are few indications that the growing construction industry will slow down. The amount of waste and debris must be controlled as the demand for buildings increases. Waste management for construction has developed into a crucial element of any project’s success. This article will discuss the reasons behind this issue, and give some advice on how to effectively manage the waste and debris generated by your projects to keep them on track.

1. What Is Construction Waste?

Large volumes of waste can be produced during construction activities, and this rubbish needs to be disposed of. The demolition or deconstruction of a structure at the end of its useful life may also produce a substantial amount of waste. Construction trash is made up of materials that are surplus to requirements as well as waste produced during construction activities (such as packaging or demolition byproducts) (as a result of over-ordering or inaccurate estimating).

Waste management on construction site is a crucial component of sustainable construction. Managing waste in this context entails reducing waste when it is practical, eliminating waste whenever possible, and repurposing things that could otherwise end up in the trash. Reducing, recycling, and reusing wastes have all been acknowledged by solid waste management techniques as being crucial to resource management that is sustainable.

Building waste management is costly and frequently results in unforeseen consequences. However, society wastes cannot be sustained if they are not reduced, reused, and recycled. It makes sense that efficient and effective waste minimization, elimination, and material reuse are crucial components of design and construction activity. For design and construction experts, tenacity, creativity, knowledge of potential markets and enterprises, and comprehension of relevant legislation are crucial.

Waste Management for Construction
Large volumes of waste can be produced during construction activities

2. Benefits of Construction Waste Management

2.1. Avoid accidents

Your employees must make sure the waste and debris are disposed of correctly to prevent any accidents. In case a fire starts or anything gets tossed into some equipment, make sure they are aware of what objects are dangerous.

2.2. Maintain a healthy working environment

You’ll need to keep a variety of tools and materials on hand in order to maintain a healthy building site, such as wheelbarrows for transporting dirt and pallets for storing bulky goods like bricks. Make sure there are always enough trash cans available so that your staff can easily dispose of their trash.

2.3. Keeping track of materials

To prevent materials from being unintentionally thrown away, every piece of construction equipment must be tracked at all times. This contributes to time management as well as cost control. If you’re using Reo mesh to keep your walls stable, you wouldn’t want to waste such a valuable resource. This frequently occurs on construction sites and can be controlled with simple procedures.

This can be as easy as designating unique colors for trash piles or maintaining a log. Never dispose of unnecessary materials until they are almost no longer functional on the site, or until there is nothing left that can be salvaged from them.

2.4. Reduce cost

Managing garbage on-site can help cut expenses by raising the cost of disposal, so it’s not only about safety.

2.5. Environmentally friendly

Additionally, waste management is crucial to ensuring that your project is environmentally sustainable. When waste is not disposed of in an environmentally sustainable manner, it can harm the local ecology and the places around it by contaminating the water supply or adding to air pollution.

3. Different Types of Construction Waste

Materials such as concrete, asphalt, bricks, stones, and soil are considered inert waste. It makes up the bulk of the waste produced during building, demolition, and excavation. It won’t break down because it is not physiologically or chemically reactive.

waste management plan construction
Concrete, asphalt, bricks, stones, and soil make up the bulk of the waste in building site

Any garbage that does not endanger people or the environment is considered non-hazardous waste. Metal, glass, and plastic are included in this.

The Control of Asbestos Regulations (2012), the COSHH Regulations, and the Control of Lead at Work Regulations (2002) apply to hazardous waste products like asbestos and call for specialized management.

You may segregate and properly label what is left so that it can be removed safely and legally by knowing the different sorts of garbage that are there.

>> Read more: Hazardous Substances In Construction Sites

4. How Can We Manage Construction Waste?

4.1. Reduce

Reducing the amount that is created in the first place is the first step towards reducing the amount that ends up in landfills.

Waste relating to construction can be reduced in some cases. Construction products, for instance, can be chosen based on how well they were created and packaged for shipping. Also keep in mind that choosing recyclable products and materials can help reduce waste.

Reducing construction waste requires careful planning. Here are some suggestions:

  • Enhance ordering procedures by preventing over ordering or ordering mistakes.
  • Leave the materials’ plastic packaging on until you are certain they will be used.
  • Use materials in standard sizes and quantities to reduce offcuts.
  • Order materials so that they arrive on time to meet construction deadlines. Thus, there is a lower chance of storage-related damage.
  • Review the amount of waste produced at the end of each project, and then adjust the acquisition of subsequent projects as necessary.

4.2. Reuse

Some substances can be reused. For instance, doors and windows in good, marketable condition could be used in place of new materials, or donated, sold, or purchased for use on another project—a type of useful reuse.

If they are not managed, materials and products that cannot be efficiently and effectively eliminated, minimized, or repurposed are eventually collected and will likely be disposed of at the lowest cost. In many parts of the nation, the cost of separation and recovery, including the disposal cost for residues, is significantly more than the disposal costs at solid waste dumps.

waste management on construction site
Reduce – Reuse – Recycle the waste

4.3. Recycle

Recycling is the process of reusing a material to create a new product, which could be the same product, one that is similar to it, or one that is entirely different.

Different materials can be recycled in many ways. These are some examples:

  • Wood can be used to create fuel, chipboard, landscaping pellets, and garden mulch.
  • Inert materials such as bricks, concrete, dirt, and stones can be crushed to produce aggregate materials such as concrete or asphalt.
  • Plasterboard that has been repossessed can be used to manufacture fresh plasterboard.
  • Metal can be recycled in order to create new metal. Compared to manufacturing metals from scratch, this utilizes less energy.
  • Paper and cardboard can be shredded or reconstituted to create insulation and animal bedding.
  • Some kinds of plastics can be recycled to make new plastic.
  • Glass that has been crushed (cullet) can be reconstituted or utilized as aggregate, insulation, and in concrete.

5. Construction Site Waste Management Plan

A thorough Site Waste Management Plan (SWMP) improves efficiency, lowers costs over time, and can help minimize on-site waste by up to 15%. At Business Waste, we’re dedicated to collaborating with you to create a strategy suited to your unique needs. The following should be included in your SWMP:

  • The contractor in charge of carrying out the plan on the job site.
  • Advice on how to reduce waste throughout the ordering process
  • A list of the various sorts of anticipated waste together with their EWC codes.
  • Information on how garbage will be recycled or repurposed during the project.
  • Information on the authorized garbage carrier and the volume of waste you anticipate they will collect.
  • Projected savings made possible by deploying the SWMP

6. Construction Waste Disposal

For the protection of the environment, animals, and human health, hazardous construction waste such as asbestos and electrical wiring must be collected and disposed of in a safe and secure manner.

If you are unable to reduce, reuse, or recycle your own construction trash, your only alternative is to dispose of it in skips. Materials that are recyclable, dangerous, and non-hazardous must all be discarded in different skips. Each load of waste that is carried off-site must include a waste transfer note as required by law.

The following information must be included in the waste transfer note:

  • The code for waste classification
  • Whether it poses a risk or not.
  • The kind of facility or industry where the garbage was generated.
  • The name(s) of the substance(s).
  • The method used to produce the waste.
  • Components of a chemical and physical analysis
  • Any unique issues, conditions, or waste-related knowledge.