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Demolition Protocol aims to make landfill last resort

Saving money by minimising construction waste is central to todays relaunch of the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) updated Demolitions Protocol.

The 2008 Protocol provides a framework for the construction industry to adopt the principles of the waste hierarchy in reusing buildings, structures, elements and products prior demolition and recycling.

Originally launched in 2003, the 2008 update was prompted by various legislative drivers such as site waste management plans. ICE said that the 2008 version will also help the construction industry meet the EU Waste Framework Directive target to reduce, reuse and recycle its waste by 70% by 2020.

ICE Waste and Resources Management Board chairman Nigel Mattravers said: Issues of cost and environmental sustainability can make managing buildings and structures at the end of their lives a complex job. The best decisions are made pro-actively, and the updated Protocol will enable policy-makers, clients, and agencies to better assess how they might re-use buildings, structures, elements, and products prior to demolition and recycling.  It prioritises the need to reuse, then recycle, with landfill always as a last resort.

Protocol author Brian Menzies said the 2008 version was briefer than the 2003 document, providing an overarching framework which does not go into the detail of how to implement the decisions.  He added that this simplified document should make it more accessible to users.

He added: There has been a lot of work on recycling but we have not been putting the emphasis on reuse.


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