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Resource recycling and re-use

The construction and demolition (C&D) industry is one of the largest waste producing industries in New Zealand. In New Zealand C&D waste represents about 18% of all waste going to landfill and around 40 - 60% of waste going to cleanfill (Waste Disposal Levy Report, 2017). An estimated 28% of all waste generated is recovered, and of that about a third is recovered within the C&D industry.

C&D resource recovery has several benefits:

  • it reduces the need for virgin materials and resources
  • conserves space in landfills and cleanfills
  • can lower project and maintenance costs.

Waka Kotahi is committed to increasing the level of resource recovery on state highway projects – capital and maintenance. Transport-related C&D waste that can be recycled or reused typically includes soil, concrete and asphalt, steel, iron, brick, plastic piping and electrical fixtures.

Efficient resource recovery can generate significant cost savings compared with landfill disposal costs. Transport costs can also be reduced; if waste is reused on-site or recycling sites can be identified in closer proximity than landfills or cleanfills.

Resource recovery implementation on state highway projects

Planning for resource recovery should ideally start during the pre-implementation phase of a project. This includes:

  • waste forecasting
  • identifying possible waste recovery options
  • specifying KPIs that require resource recovery targets and actions
  • developing a waste management plan
  • identifying the team for the delivery of the resource recovery actions during the final design and construction phase of the infrastructure project.

Implementation of resource recovery happens at the final design and construction phases of the project.  

Resource recovery implementation on state highway projects: phase 1 plans the detailed business case, phase 2 concerns with resource consents and procurement process and the phase 3 is design and construction.

For further information contact environment@nzta.govt.nz.