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  • According to WRAP, around 420 million tonnes of materials are used by the UK construction industry each year, and approximately 120 tonnes becomes waste

  • WRAP report that at least 10% of the value of materials used in the construction must derive from recycled or re-used content in the materials selected. Commomly, a target of 10-15% recycled content is being set for new buildings although actual performance is frequently higher.

  • The total consumption of all materials in the UK amounts to 678 million tonnes per year, this equates to 11.3 tonnes per person. Of this figure 420 million tonnes are used in construction every year, or 7 tonnes per person, according to Greenspec.

  • Construction materials account for 20% of the UK’s ecological footprint; 19% of the UK’s total greenhouse gas emissions, and 30% of all UK freight transport.

  • The production and transportation of construction materials are estimated to use 6% of UK energy. 

  • Cement manufacture accounts for around 2% of the UK’s carbon dioxide emissions, according to Sitelines.

  • The largest component of construction minerals are aggregates, principally crushed rock (limestone, igneous rock and sandstone) and sand and gravel. Other minerals used in construction are clay, chalk and limestone for cement making, brick clay, gypsum, slate and building stone. 

  • In the UK, aggregates make up over 50% of construction materials.

  • In 2013, some 195 million tonnes of minerals were extracted in the UK, of this 157 million tonnes (81%) was construction materials. 

  • Having been introduced in 2002 at £1.60 per tonne, the aggregate levy has since increased for 2010-11 to £2 per tonne. 

  • An estimated 532,000 tonnes of construction and demolition waste was generated in Hertfordshire in 2003/04. (Waste Core Strategy Submission, January 2008).

  • The UK construction industry is responsible for 32% of landfill waste. A further 29% of waste to landfill is generated by mining and quarrying, according to WRAP.

  • Recycled and secondary aggregates supply over 25% of the UK’s requirement, reported by Minerals UK.

  • The Olympic Delivery Authority achieved a figure of 98% of construction waste diverted from landfill and reused or recycled the material instead during the constrcution of the Olympic site; reported by Theiet

  • Netregs states that since April 2008, it has been a legal requirement that a construction project in England worth more than £300,000 must have a Site Waste Management Plan.

  • The Strategy for Sustainable Construction (PDF 1.89mb) Opening new window  Opening a new window June 2008, set a target of a 50% reduction of construction, demolition and excavation waste by 2012, compared to 2008.

  • WRAP promoted the above campaign which ended in 2012. It has commitment to halve waste to landfill from over 800 signatories.