Construction and Demolition (C&D) waste is waste from any building works, demolition and development (including transport infrastructure).
Excavated soil and stone makes up about 80% of this waste, with the remainder including concrete, brick, tiles, glass, metal, plastic and wood.
C&D is the largest single waste stream in the EU making up around one third of all waste produced annually so it is critical that we manage it effectively.
The EPA National Waste Prevention Programme has gathered a list of resources
for waste prevention and best practices on C&D waste.
In December 2020, the Regional Waste Management Offices published a report
detailing the capacity of the waste sector in Ireland to manage the current volumes of C&D wastes along with projections on the amount of such waste likely to arise up to 2029.
Under certain circumstances, substances may be considered a by-product rather than a waste. This has clear economic value for operators by allowing them to treat such material as a resource rather than a waste. It has broader circular economy benefits by ensuring that the productive life of resources is enhanced and extended but it requires an efficient, sustainable system to function effectively.
In order to be considered a by-product, a substance or object must satisfy the following conditions:
further use of the substance or object is certain
the substance or object can be used directly without any further processing other than normal industrial practice
the substance or object is produced as an integral part of a production process
further use is lawful in that the substance or object fulfils all relevant product, environmental and health protection requirements for the specific use and will not lead to overall adverse environmental or human health impacts
A decision made by an economic operator under Article 27
must be notified to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), who maintain a register and may review and overturn a decision.
End-of-waste refers to a process where material which is recovered or recycled from waste ceases to be waste.
For a material to achieve end-of-waste status a number of conditions must be satisfied:
The substance or object is to be used for specific purposes
A market or demand exists for such a substance or object
The substance or object fulfils the technical requirements for the specific purposes and meets the existing legislation and standards applicable to products
The use of the substance or object will not lead to overall adverse environmental or human health impacts
End-of-waste decisions can be made at three levels:
1. EU level decisions, which apply across the European Union. So far only 3 end-of-waste criteria have been established at EU level:
Iron, steel and aluminium scrap
Glass cullet (recycled glass that has been crushed and is ready for re-melting)
2. National criteria, which apply across the country. No national decisions on end-of-waste have been made in Ireland to date.
3. Single-case decisions, which apply only to the operator who made the application for end-of-waste status to the EPA for a decision.
The EPA are responsible for making decisions on end-of-waste applications in Ireland. Further information on the process and details of end-of-waste decisions granted to date can be found on the EPA website.