51% of all the waste in East Sussex and Brighton & Hove is from construction but we don’t hear about it. An amazing amount of energy and materials are used in construction so we really need to do what we can to preserve these precious resources and minimize their impact on our environment.
When you hire a skip, the waste is taken back to a depot, sorted and recycled.
If you are filling a skip, ensure any chemicals do not spill out as the waste cannot then be recycled.
Tips to save resources and minimise building waste:
- When designing your project, try to work within standard sizes of materials.
- Once designed, ask your builder for advice about materials and wastage.
- Before a builder starts working for you, talk to them about how they will source and dispose of materials. Explore more environmentally friendly solutions.
- When dismantling an old project, take it apart carefully and offer any useful materials on local recycling groups and selling pages.
- A builders quote will usually include clearing away of all materials. Ask where the materials will go. If this is going to be thrown away, why not ask on recycling pages if anyone would like them to come and pick them up.
- Builders have strict deadlines and don’t have time to source small amounts of materials so they will buy more than is needed which leads to waste. Ask them to tell you when this is the case and source them yourself.
- When doing building work, if you run out of something but only need a tiny amount – ask on local recycling and selling groups if anyone has it spare. I acquired 70cm of drainage pipe this way, otherwise we would have had to buy a 3 metre piece.
- Don’t rip builders bags. It is tempting when you get near the bottom but then they’re unusable. Gardeners will gladly take the bags.
- Advertise any leftover building materials on selling or recycling pages.
- If you’re looking for wood for a project, look at old furniture to see if you can adapt this. The wood is quite often of a better quality too. Try looking in the shop at the local tip.