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Pocketing the benefits

By cunningly focusing on bankable profits rather than the warm glow that results from environmental friendliness, a new pocket guide designed specifically for professional builders and tradesmen, and providing concise information and advice on environmental management should certainly appeal.

The Essential Green Guide from construction improvement products and services provider CIRIA is designed to help improve awareness of relevant issues and demonstrate how improving performance and being greener could save money.

The guide provides advice on areas such as buying and storing materials, preventing pollution and considering neighbours and includes checklists and summaries of relevant legislation to help identify environmental problems on-site, minimise costs and improve existing performance.

In the Staying on the Right Side of the Law section, tips include ensuring that: waste transfer notes are completed before any waste leaves the site, all companies carrying waste have a valid waste-carriers registration certificate and that all wastes are disposed of at a correctly licensed site.

The bite-sized chunks of information coupled with examples of illegal activity and financial waste make the guide an accessible means of promoting best practice. Not stopping here, CIRIA has also announced the launch of Construction Waste and Resources, a new website aimed at encouraging waste reduction and improved resource productivity in the building and civil engineering sectors. The website is the result of a project carried out by CIRIA and not-for-profit distributing company Viridis, which sought to take forward the findings of the Biffaward Construction Industry Mass Balance study.

The site contains a searchable database of more than 100 summaries of commonly used publications, covering key topics related to general design and construction good practice, a section on sustainable development criteria, guidance on material optimisation and advice on waste management procedures and regulation.

Other features include a case studies area, which provides examples of how other organisations are approaching waste reduction, a paper on model policies that takes into account existing planning policy in England, Scotland and Wales, as well as links to other websites.

For more information on The Essential Green Guide and Construction Waste and Resources, visit

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