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Closing the Resource Use Loop


The Project

The BRE Centre for Waste and Recycling has recently started a two-year project, funded by DETR, to provide comprehensive and objective guidance on material resource efficiency in the construction sector.


Phases of the Project

1. Identify current construction, demolition and refurbishment waste arisings, amounts, waste management routes, costs and associated environmental impacts

2. Feasibility of potential waste management routes and their predicted impacts relating to cost, legislation, global and local environments

3. Identification of the Best Practicable Environmental Option (BPEO) for construction, demolition and refurbishment waste

4. Guidance and the decision making procedure to allow waste producers to identify and implement the BPEO


Through the use of the BRE SMARTWaste tool and other data sources, the current waste types and arisings, costs and disposal methods can be identified. The feasibility of potential waste management will be evaluated, focusing on:

  • On-site solutions
  • Improved resource recovery
  • Reduced environmental impact
  • Improved productivity
  • Reduced costs
  • Markets for recycled materials
  • Availability and location of facilities
  • Use of recycled materials
  • Standards and specifications
  • Time and space and other logistical issues.


The BPEO procedure establishes, for a given set of objectives, the option that provides the most benefits or the least damage to the environment as a whole, at acceptable cost, in the long term as well as in the short term.

For different materials and locations, different options are likely to prove more environmentally effective and economically affordable, therefore the BPEO for construction, demolition and refurbishment waste is likely to be a mix of different waste management methods.

A database will be created which will enable an objective assessment of the BPEO by cross-referencing all common waste producers and components with existing and potential waste management options and scenarios.

The project outputs will be disseminated via this website and in collaboration with Movement for Innovation and the Construction Best Practice Programme

If you would like further information on this project or become involved then please contact:

Katherine Adams


telephone: 01923 664478

fax: 01923 664786

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