What we’re up against

• Every year, the construction industry:

  • consumes more than 400 million tonnes of materials
  • generates more than 100 million tonnes of waste
  • sends 30 million tonnes of waste straight to landfill
300,000 tonnes of plasterboard waste was generated in 2006.

275 million tonnes of aggregates are used each year in the UK as raw construction materials. Of this, around 65 million tonnes are already derived from recycled or secondary sources.

48% of the UK’s total wood waste comes from construction and demolition, amounting to about 5 million tonnes per year. When wood is put into landfill it emits methane, a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

• There are 11 million tonnes of iron and steel scrap arisings produced per year – around 70% is recovered.

• 11 years ago it cost a £7 per tonne to dump waste in landfill. It’s now at £24 per tonne and set to double by 2015.