Construction and demolition materials generated 569 million tons of unused debris in 2017. This much debris not only harms the environment, but it also produces excess waste, which is an issue that affects construction costs.

Creating a sustainable construction project is easier than it seems. By following these steps, you’ll notice greater waste reduction and construction cost savings.

How To Reduce Construction Waste: Initial Steps

Before a construction project begins, there are several steps to keep materials safe. Planning prevents project missteps and waste down the line.

Plan for the Right Number of Materials

One of the most common origination of construction waste is poor material estimation. In a project’s beginning stages, a specific quantity of material gets estimated. These materials are then ordered for the upcoming project. The estimation is an exact science, but mistakes happen from time to time.

To prevent errors, double-check estimates and make sure calculations are correct. Wrong estimates could lead to excess materials, which produces waste and extra costs.

Consider the same concept when ordering custom-sized materials. Materials that are not sized well impact project timing and costs, as well as waste.

Deter Thieves and Accidents

Missing and damaged items may cause project delays and increased costs. To deter thieves and accidents, construction materials should get stored. Proper storage protects materials and shields materials from bad weather.

Storage also encourages organization. With well-organized materials, construction workers save time and effort during projects.

Choose Materials Sent in Sustainable Packaging

Many materials, especially appliances, get delivered in excess packaging. To avoid waste, choose or request minimal packaging. If this is unavoidable, consider recycling the packaging.

Prepare the Site Ahead of Time

Preparing each site with recycling bins ensures debris won’t end up in a landfill. Each site should also have compost bins and general waste bins. Knowing which materials to recycle also saves everyone time. Providing a list to construction workers prevents non-recyclable materials from getting recycled.

How To Reduce Construction Waste: During the Project

During a construction project, material mindfulness is the key to avoiding wastefulness. These tips help manage waste prevention, even when it’s unavoidable.

Recycle Materials

Construction and demolition recycling is great for the environment. It’s also ideal for reducing construction site waste. By recycling or reusing unused materials, unavoidable waste turns into a construction asset.

For companies that work on many projects, saving extra material is cost-effective. Even scraps have potential. Extra pieces of wood or concrete make perfect backfill material.

Donate Excess Materials

While reusing materials has its benefits, it’s not always the best solution. For materials your company doesn’t need, consider donating them. Appliances and cardboard are all items that can get donated, as long as they’re in good condition.

Waste Reduction Wins

Waste reduction helps the environment, as well as project costs. As long as your project’s waste doesn’t end up in a landfill, you’re making a positive difference. The financial benefits prove waste reduction is a necessary step for every project.

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