Construction waste starts to divide England and Wales
Wales has launched a consultation to reduce construction waste while England looks set to take a laxer approach on the issue.
The Welsh Assembly is proposing to introduce new regulations in the form of site waste management plans (SWMPs) that will require developers, builders and contractors to consider how to prevent, minimise and recycle waste when planning a new construction or demolition project.
SWMPs already exist in England, but it is likely these will be axed under the Coalition's Red Tape Challenge as part of a wider move to deregulate the environmental sector.
While many waste experts feel the benefits from having a SWMP outweigh the cost of implementation, some feel better enforcement is needed and that this enforcement responsibility has not been clearly defined.
Over the next 12 weeks the Welsh Assembly is inviting people to have their say on the proposed regulations and comment on a range of issues including the scope, content and enforcement of the plans.
The consultation document sets out how any additional planning caused by the regulations can be offset by significant cost savings resulting from the introduction of more sustainable waste practices.
In launching the consultation, Welsh Environment Minister John Griffiths said he was "confident" that SWMPs would become an important tool for the construction sector.