Builders offered SWMP advice

Construction businesses are being urged to take advantage of a free service to help them get up to speed on new waste regulations.

Site Waste Management Plans (SWMPs) came into force in England on April 6 and apply to all construction projects costing £300,000 which begin on or after this date.

It is now a legal requirement for firms undertaking development work to draw up plans setting out how building materials and other waste products will be removed from the site and recycling, reuse and recovery will be maximised.

Free online advice service NetRegs is urging businesses to use its resources – including a simple step-by-step guide to SWMPs – to ensure they comply with the new regulations.

Richard Martin, programme manager at NetRegs, told edie: “We have produced a guide to what it means that has put it all into plain language.

“NetRegs has been designed for the smaller businesses who do not know anything about environmental technology so we do make a point of reducing things down to easy language.

“Businesses are often put off by this sort of thing because they think it all seems very complicated and that’s where NetRegs comes in.”

The construction sector produces more than 100m tonnes of waste a year, and Government hopes SWMPs will reduce this by as much as 60% – in turn reducing costs for developers and builders by up to 5%.

Mr Martin added: “An awful lot of construction waste is material that has never been used.

“We are trying to help to avoid that sort of thing and that’s where SWMPs can be very effective.”

NetRegs provides information on environmental issues for a wide range of industries, which companies can search through by industry sector or environmental topic.

There is also a section to keep businesses up to date with ever-changing environmental legislation, and companies can sign up for email alerts when new information or resources are placed on the site.

For more information, visit

Kate Martin

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