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Mobile On-Site Residential Construction Waste Recycling

Posted in Models, Policies, Sustainable Cities Round Tables, Visions by darlenegaylor on September 9th, 2007

Envirogrind Recycling Australia Pty Ltd on-site recyclers of brick, roof tile, ceramic tile, plasterboard and framing timber waste were contracted by Momentum Builders to develop a recycling plan that would attempt to recycle 95% of all construction waste from the Southern Cross Lynbrook Retirement Village Development.

Envirogrind Recycling requires a separate area of land specifically designated for recycling works with access to water to assist in dust minimization. Waste material that is to be recycled is stockpiled in the recycling works area and once processed, using Envirogrinds Packer 750 mobile grinder, left in this same area for re-use as required.

Four recycling compounds were set up for staged recycling works to be performed on the stockpiled recyclable waste streams. Designated corrals for plasterboard, timber and scrap metal as well as bin containers supplied for plastics, cardboard and waste paper were allocated at each of the four recycling compounds.

Plasterboard was mulched into gypsum and used as a soil amendment tilled into the ground around the development. Framing timber and timber off cuts were mulched into woodchips and used throughout the site for safe and clean walkways and entrances to the units under construction.

With the first week of July being the wettest since 1983 the woodchips were very useful maintaining walking paths, vehicle access and car parking areas. Instead of boggy mud and unsafe walkways Momentum Builders were able to easily amend areas to safe, dry and even surface areas.

On a similar development comprising 34 two storey brick dwellings Envirogrind Recycling was able to supply over 141 cubic metres of crushed rock recycled from excess brick and roof tiles.

The Envirogrind Recycling machine is small, mobile and can work in restricted and compact sites. Recycled product can be left on the same site or waste can be recycled into the back of our tipper truck and transported to a designated area where it may be needed.

Cardboard and paper including cement bags were collected and recycled along with plastic wrap and taken to Australian Paper Recyclers located locally.

Other recycling initiatives have resulted in over 13 cubic metres of polystyrene being recycled, 42 cubic metres of scrap metal and 1 cubic metre of glass containers were all recycled.

Using the 3 Rs, reduce, re-use and recycle Momentum Builders were able to reduce waste on this site by negotiating with contractors to take away excess product waste as Ezyclad did removing 25 cubic metres of excess polystyrene from the Lynbrook site.

The recycling and re-use of 65 cubic metres of framing timber, 103 cubic metres of plasterboard and 2.5 cubic metres of ceramic tiles resulted in over 170 cubic metres of waste being diverted from landfill.

The recycling of cardboard, paper, plastic, scrap metal, glass, metal cans and polystyrene has resulted in another 194 cubic metres of construction waste being diverted from landfill.

In total more than 364 cubic metres of waste has been recycled with 46% of this being re-used back on the Southern Cross Lynbrook Retirement Village Development site.

Momentum Builders donated over 3000 discarded plastic pots used by landscapers to import plants to the site. The equivalent of over 5 cubic metres of plastic pots ear marked for landfill went to Mambourin Enterprises Inc., located in the Melbourne western suburb of Sunshine.

Mambourin Enterprises is a not-for-profit disability organisation which operates a plant market garden growing water resistant plants produced by intellectually challenged adults. The organisation was very appreciative of Momentums and Envirogrind Recyclingss initiative as it will greatly benefit their organisation by reducing overheads. (For more information on this organisation you can go to their web site

Construction waste can be easily recycled into valuable and useful products on- site or through local recyclers thereby diverting it from landfill. Reduction of heavy truck cartage, wear and tear on roads and neighbouring amenity and reduction in fuel consumption for transport costs all help to assist our environment and our planet.

Momentum Builders will be entering the 2008 HIA Green Smart Awards in the catagory of “Resource Efficiency Housing Award”.

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