Assessment of initiatives to prevent waste from building and construction sectors

Sustainable consumption and production, Environment

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The study has identified and evaluated waste prevention initiatives in the building and construction sector. The main part of the initiatives is based on information tools such as guidelines, handbooks, calculation tools and checklists. Seven case studies have been described to illustrate different categories within waste prevention. It seems that waste prevention measures only to a limited extent are integrated in the building and construction sector. But there are a lot of good ideas for future actions within the sector, therefore a chapter is dedicated to further present these ideas for waste prevention practices that were identified during the mapping of initiatives. The case studies demonstrated that presently voluntary measures play a leading role in waste prevention. Most of the measures are related to the elimination of hazardous substances from building and construction waste. Respondents in the study have emphasised the need for education and information amongst all actors, from the early planning stage, right through to the implementation and execution of the projects themselves.



Targets for waste prevention

The past experiences in the EU countries have shown the difficulties in finding reliable indicators to measure waste prevention. This is often the result of the inherent difficulty in measuring something that is not there anymore. Further, assessment of the different environmental impacts associated with the prevented quantity of waste is another problem. Waste prevention indicators are in demand but widely accepted models do not exist on an international scale (BIO Intelligence Service 2009).


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