Construction Debris Removal
Items disposed of by a construction debris removal service are construction and demolition materials, also known as C&D, which consist of the debris generated during the construction, renovation, and demolition of buildings, roads, and bridges. These materials often include bulky, heavy materials such as concrete, wood, metal, glass, and salvaged building components. Clean C&D debris, or CCDD, includes the following uncontaminated materials: reclaimed asphalt pavement, broken concrete, bricks, rock, and stone.
Roll off dumpsters are typically used for the construction waste disposal of C&D materials, although you should aim to reduce, reuse, and recycle (in that order) as much as possible. Before embarking on a construction project, it is vital that you check with the local authorities to determine what you need in terms of dumpsters, permits, and sorting the waste. Some dumpster rental companies will sort the rubble for you while others only allow certain materials in their dumpster.
C&D generates almost two hundred and thirty million tons of waste annually, much of which is usually reusable or recyclable. It is becoming a problem because the volume of waste it produces is filling up landfills at a rapid pace to the extent that many landfills are on the way to closing down permanently, if they have not done so already. The illegal dumping of C&D can result in health risks, cleanup costs, and decreased property values. It is important to comply with all federal and local guidelines as well as the regulations of the rental company to avoid fines, surcharges, and even possibly felonies.
Diverting C&D Waste
There are many benefits to reducing the amount of C&D materials dumped in landfills. Firstly, less waste will obviously lead to a lesser need for landfills, which can potentially reduce the environmental issues surrounding said landfills such as the atmospheric and hydrological effects.
According to the EPA, the methane produced by the rotting matter in unmanaged landfills is twenty times more effective than carbon dioxide at trapping heat from the sun; additionally, the mixture of chemicals in landfills can create toxic gases that significantly affect the air quality around them. Landfills also create a toxic mixture of the liquids and chemicals dumped into the area that is extremely harmful to the wildlife around it.
Lower Waste Management Costs via the 4R’s
Reducing, reusing, recycling, and re-buying C&D materials requires less need to extract materials from virgin resources, thereby reducing greenhouse emissions as well as preserving our limited natural resources. Additionally, deconstruction and select demolition methods redirect significant amounts of materials from dumping and present business opportunities inside the local community, stimulating the economy while also reducing the amount of waste produced. Recovered materials can also be donated to qualified charities, resulting in tax benefits.
Before beginning construction, carefully estimate the amount of raw materials you need and make sure only that number of materials is brought to your site. While some people may think it is better to overestimate the materials needed to avoid a shortage, this will often leave you with more materials than you need, materials that will only end up in the garbage and requiring construction debris removal.
Certain construction or demolition materials can be separated out of the rubble pile and salvaged prior to disposal. CCDD can be reused on other projects or made available to other companies and people for their own projects. It is important to note, however, that CCDD must be used within a reasonable amount of time before the materials are considered abandoned and must be disposed of using a construction waste disposal service.
Three methods of recycling are made available to demolition contractors including mixed material collection, on-site processing, and source separation. Wood, aluminum and other metals, asphalt, concrete, and corrugated cardboard can all be recycled. During mixed material collection, recyclable materials are moved from the job site, sorted at a facility, and sent to recycling processors. For on-site processing, recyclable materials are processed on site and made ready for reuse either on the original site or a project elsewhere. During source separation, similar materials are separated from other wastes at the job site by category, and then sent to processors for recycling.
It is all well and good to recycle to reduce the affect construction has on the planet, but people must want to purchase the recycled items to make the cycle complete. Consumer demand drives the recycling process, making it economically viable to continue the process. Many recycled products are already on the market today so it should be fairly easy to purchase recycled materials over new materials, but if you do not see a recycled option immediately it is well worth your time to do extra research to find the recycled products.
Deconstruction: What It Is and Why It Matters for Your Construction Waste Management
Deconstruction is the selective dismantlement of building components, specifically for reuse, recycling, and waste management; it is an environmentally-friendly alternative to demolition. Old buildings are constantly being torn down to make room for new buildings and they are often simply demolished to make way for the new building quicker. During the demolition process, buildings are simply smashed so the pieces can be quickly taken to a landfill and work on the new project can begin. Although demolition saves a great deal of time and money, it creates a substantial amount of waste. Overall, deconstruction results in cleaner lots, less construction debris disposal, economic stimulation, and extending the life of landfills as there will be substantially less materials to dump.
Whenever possible, it is important to choose reuse over recycle as recycling costs more energy and money. A recent study from the American Institute of Architects has found that up to forty percent of the nation’s solid waste that ends up in landfills is building waste, an absolutely staggering number when you realize there are other, greener options to consider.
The method of deconstruction, however, is essentially construction in reverse. It can range from the reuse of an entire building or foundation to just the careful removal of a few items. The process requires a few more steps than simple demolition and has strict guidelines to ensure the health and safety of both the people and the site involved. The potential effect deconstruction can have on the environment varies from project to project, as the amount of materials that can potentially be drawn from the structure must be weighed against the time and labor it will take to retrieve them.
Building materials that can be readily salvaged using this method include flooring, lighting fixtures, paneling, insulation, carpeting, ceramic tile, and bathroom fixtures, amongst others.
Structural vs. Non-Structural Deconstruction
Deconstruction is typically categorized as structural and non-structural. As the names suggest, structural demolition involves dismantling the actual structure of a building while non-structural demolition consists of reclaiming doors, appliances, windows, and other such items. Structural demolition is rarer than non-structural demolition and typically only used for items that have unusual or expensive items in the foundation such as brick or dimension stone.
More Reasons to Deconstruct in Your C&D Projects
While it is true that deconstruction takes longer than demolition, the disadvantages to the process do not even come close to outweighing the advantages. It is accurate that the initial cost of deconstruction is often higher than demolition, but do not let that drive you off.
By donating the salvaged materials, you can write off the appraised value of those materials, which can in turn result in a sizeable tax deduction.
This deduction can offset or even exceed the cost of demolition. You can also choose to sell the materials directly, which will result in a faster transaction of money. Even if you do not deconstruct an entire building, charities strongly encourage the donations of small loads or single item donations. Every little bit helps!
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, new construction consumes sixty percent of all materials used in the economy every year, excluding food and fuel. Additionally, the U.S. now produces over 124,670,000 tons of debris every year much of which ends up requiring some form of construction debris removal service.
Anything that can help reduce the debris generated must be done. Deconstruction decreases climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions from landfills and incinerators, as well as reduces the need for more toxic landfills, lessens the harmful effects of natural resource extraction for new building materials, and recycles completely useable material for reuse and original repurposing. The pros of deconstruction includes tax breaks, local jobs, lower cost of building materials, conserved landfill space, lower energy and fuel costs – the list goes on and benefits every person involved in the process.
Always be sure to check with the local authorities for permits you may need to partake in deconstruction or construction waste disposal and ensure any contractor you hire has the appropriate permits and licenses. Each job is unique and requires a different amount of labor as well as special methods to salvage the appropriate materials, so choose somebody with a good reputation and that you are confident can get the job done responsibly.