Irish Minister urges greater recycling of construction and demolition waste

Dick Roche, Irish Minister for the Environment, has urged the construction industry to recycle more of its waste at a seminar to promote a voluntary initiative aimed at minimising waste in the industry.

“Construction and demolition waste is a very significant waste stream, not only here in Ireland but right across the EU,” the Minister stated. He added that if the construction industry is top meet the challenging 2013 85% recycling target set in the 1998 policy statement Changing our ways, then new and innovative measures will be required.

He also used the seminar to highlight progress made in the recycling sector in Ireland, despite recent European Court of Judgement rulings against Ireland for its poor waste management performance.

“That judgement related to past – ie pre 2000 – poor waste management practices. Since then, the law has been significantly strengthened; major progress has been made in modernising our waste infrastructure and services through the implementation of the regional waste management plans, while substantial additional enforcement resources have been provided, co-ordinated by the Office of Environmental Enforcement, established over a year ago,” he said.

In his address, the Minister referred to the Draft Best Practice Guidelines on the Preparation of Waste Management Plans for Construction and Demolition Waste, published late last year.

“The purpose of the draft guidelines is to promote an integrated approach to C&D waste management throughout the duration of development projects. They also propose the introduction of on-site C&D waste management plans as standard practice for projects above thresholds,” the Minister said.

He added that he would be publishing finalised guidelines in the near future.

By David Hopkins

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie