On the prevailing construction waste recycling practices

Waste generated from construction and building demolition work constitutes about 68% of all solid waste generated each year in South East Queensland. Consequently, it has created a serious waste management problem. The State Governments of Victoria and New South Wales have been encouraging the use of recycled materials from construction and related waste; they have also promulgated specifications for their use. In Queensland, however, similar regulations are not anticipated in the near future, which explains the lack of funded research conducted in this important arena. This paper presents an evaluation of the prevailing waste recycling practices in Queensland. Nine sites were visited, including two construction sites, three demolition sites, three recycling plants and one landfill in South East Queensland. The difficulties encountered by the recycling programme operators and their associates at these sites are described and the benefits of recycling construction materials are presented. One of the major barriers is that the local councils disallow the use of recycled materials in new construction work. To help rectify these impediments to recycling, recommendations are given to increase the use of recycled construction waste in South East Queensland.

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