Defra has published proposals for reducing the 109 million tonnes of waste produced by the UK's construction industry every year.

Around 13% of all the solid materials delivered to construction sites goes unused, and up to one third ends up in landfill. Around a third of all fly tipping includes waste from the construction, demolition and excavation sectors.

Defra’s consultation proposes making site waste management plans a legal requirement for all projects in England worth over £250,000. The plans would detail how all the waste produced on the site will be reused, recycled or disposed of. During construction, the plans would be updated to record what actually happens to the waste, including the legitimate disposal of materials that cannot be reused or recycled. This audit trail would reduce the potential for fly-tipping and increase the accountability of contractors. Higher level reporting and review processes would apply to projects over £500,000. Site waste management plans should also help the construction industry to get maximum value out of its waste and make better use of resources.

The consultation closes on Monday 9 July.


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