Once upon a time, contractors could easily haul off all their construction debris and simply dump it either in a landfill, or in some empty lot. Those days are long gone, however.
Between local, state and federal regulations, C & D waste best practices, and the numerous benefits of recycling and reuse of many materials, it is far better to treat the landfill as a last option.
And considering that every contractor is a business person, it is also relevant that decisions around the cleaning, hauling, and disposing of their construction and demolition (C&D) waste be viewed as business decisions.
Construction Debris Disposal as a Business Function
All construction work generates debris. Whether it is new construction, remodel, or demolition it is a fundamental reality that construction projects create a great deal of waste. What kind of waste? Well, here’s a graphic that illustrates some of the numbers that have been complied on the subject.
The actual amounts of debris and the percentages of usable waste varies with every job, of course. But the reality is that regardless of the type of job their will always be a lot of debris and waste material to be handled. The question, then, is how to best handle it.
Why Engage In Recycling and Reuse of Debris
One of the options, of course, is to reuse as much of the waste material as possible. The benefits of recycling have been made abundantly clear for a number of years now. But the idea that construction waste can be recycled or reused is still a somewhat novel one to many contractors. According to the state of California’s CalRecycle website:
Reuse and recycling of C&D materials is one component of a larger holistic practice called sustainable or green building construction. The efficient use of resources is a fundamental tenet of green building construction. This means reducing, reusing, and recycling most if not all materials that remain after a construction or renovation project. Green building construction practices can include salvaging dimensional lumber from the project, using aggregates reclaimed from crushed concrete, or grinding drywall scraps for use on site as a soil amendment.
At the end of a building’s life, demolition generates large amounts of materials that can be reused or recycled, principally wood, concrete and other types of masonry, and drywall. Rather than demolish an entire building, consider “deconstructing” all or part of the structure. Deconstruction is the orderly dismantling building components for reuse or recycling. In contrast to demolition, where buildings are knocked down and materials are either landfilled or recycled, deconstruction involves carefully taking apart portions of buildings or removing their contents with the primary goal being reuse. It can be as simple as stripping out cabinetry, fixtures, and windows, or as involved as manually taking apart the building frame.
The bottom line for construction professionals is that it pays to recycle wherever and whatever they can. The good news is that many municipalities and private firms have developed the means and resources to make this option not only viable, but relatively easy and profitable for everyone involved.
How Much Construction Debris Do You Create?
Even seasoned contractors are often surprised at the sheer volume of waste and debris generated at their job sites. Especially if it is being cleaned and hauled off periodically throughout the course of a project. But seeing the volume in terms of percentage of materials retained and used can shed a new light on the importance of reclaiming as much of that material as possible.
Getting Real Assistance from Real Professionals for Your Construction Debris
Trash hauling and site clean-up might be considered “part of the job” for contractors, bit it really doesn’t have to be. When you consider that every hour your crew spends picking up debris, cleaning the site, and hauling and disposing of the material, is an hour NOT spent generating revenue on a project. And the bigger the job, the more the opportunity costs add up.
Add to that the possible costs of hazardous material disposal and even required training for your employees, the benefits of outsourcing these tasks become more attractive.
Do you have a current or upcoming project that will need construction trash clean-up and removal? If so, call Junk King! Our team specializes in construction trash removal. We can be at your facility in mere minutes, so call us today! Our crew is fully insured and well-trained, so you can trust them to get rid of your unwanted items in a professional and courteous fashion.
And one of the best things about hiring Junk King is that we recycle a much of the material we pick-up. This is proof of our commitment to being an eco-friendly removal service. If you have questions about what we do or what we believe, give us a call at (707) 744-4254.