The Department of the Environment has published new guidelines for managing waste from construction and demolition projects.
The new guidance, which has now been adopted by the Minister for Planning and Environment, is a requirement of the most recent Island Plan (2011).
It aims to reduce the amount of waste generated from construction projects and ensure that any waste that is produced is more effectively and sustainably managed, through increased re-use and recycling. It should result in significant environmental benefits and potential cost savings on major building projects.
Planning applications for major developments or those which involve a lot of waste or significant demolition will have to submit site waste management plans (SWMP) as part of the planning application process and will be a material consideration when the application is considered.
Construction projects generate the largest amount of solid waste in the Island (by weight) and much of this is currently sent to landfill. Deputy Rob Duhamel said: “Better waste management on construction sites will mean less waste going to landfill, less quarrying, less transport of materials, less energy consumption and less risk of fly tipping.”
“In addition to these environmental benefits, however, there are also significant potential cost savings for the construction industry, including lower waste disposal and transport costs and cost savings due to the reduction in the amount of materials wasted and purchased.”
Deputy Duhamel added: “The challenge for designers, site engineers, surveyors and those involved in procurement is to accurately assess the use of materials and the potential for their re-use and recycling both on and off site, at all stages during the construction project. The challenge for the principal contractor, sub-contractors and waste contractors is to work together to ensure that SWMPs are properly implemented.”
The new guidance follows a consultation exercise with the public and key stakeholders, who raised a number of issues. Deputy Rob Duhamel said: “I have carefully considered all the points raised during the consultation process and have made a number of changes to the original draft guidance in response. I would like to thank all those who have taken the trouble to make their views known”.