Thursday, January 17, 2008

Inert Waste management

In December of last year, Defra launched an informal consultation that looked at rules of recovery and disposal of inert construction waste such as brick, concrete, hardcore and subsoil. Defra pointed out that the informal consultation reflects recommendations from a published report in 2006 by Lord Davidson and aimed to increase the efficiency in the use of construction, demolition and excavation materials. It also took into account a statement by Quarry Products Association which looked at the need for inert waste to restore aggregate mineral workings, suggesting that secondary and recycled aggregates should be the 'first element of supply'. The UK produces 17 million tonnes per annum, more recycled and secondary aggregates than any other European country, these materials "cannot meet the entire demand for aggregates, either in terms of quality, but more significantly, in terms of quantity". The QPA said that "a level playing field must be created by bringing all inert waste recovery and disposal activities under one proportionate and risk based regulatory regime".

The consultation, sent to, this will be out for 13 weeks and ends on 21 March, is inviting proposals that address:

* The need for the different activities involving inert waste
* Revised guidance on the testing of inert wastes that are land filled
* Inconsistencies in terminology for describing inert waste going to landfill
* The quality of guidance of activity, recovery and disposal

Wastes that are outside of the reviews, but are considered as construction and demolition wastes include timber, plastics and hazardous materials like asbestos.


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