Everyone in the country is familiar with the concept of sorting their trash. There’s a reason why people are asked to recycle paper, plastic, glass, and metal rather than outright throwing it in the wastebasket — it allows us to cut down on harmful practices, like burning garbage or tossing it in a landfill, and reduces our need to produce new resources at the cost of the environment. Even textiles can be recycled, although the process for collecting and recycling textiles can differ from traditional recycling practices.
The same philosophy holds up on the project site, where identifying and sorting materials can greatly reduce the financial, societal, and environmental costs of disposal. In this two-part series, the Miami construction lawyers at Cotney Construction Law will discuss some strategies for sorting waste on the project site. Efficient waste management is not only our altruistic duty, it also helps reduce your costs, improve your company’s reputation, and avoid potentially costly legal disputes.
Establishing a Process
Effective jobsite sorting is largely predicated on contractors nailing down an accepted process for identifying and sorting materials throughout the building process. Due to economic concerns related to altering from traditional debris disposal methods, it’s important to develop and implement a plan that is both financially responsible and environmentally sustainable. Ensuring that all parties — you (the contractor), subcontractors, suppliers, etc. — are on the same page and recognize the approved protocols for waste management, is integral to a successful sorting strategy. Therefore, this information should be built into the contract and implemented by superintendents and project managers.
Some other tips for establishing a jobsite sorting process include:
- Since you commissioned architects and engineers to provide project specifications, use this information to inform diversion target rates and general performance requirements.
- Establish corporate guidelines and policies that take into account your background knowledge about certain types of projects.
- Work with waste management service companies to acquire containers for sorting project site refuse and estimate the number of containers needed to maximize the capacity of each container and mitigate transportation costs.
- Avoid project site obstructions.
Collection and Hauling
Once sorted waste containers are filled with construction and demolition waste, they can be collected by trucks and relocated to diversion facilities. In the United States, light and medium duty trucks can be used, but it’s always a good idea to pair trucks and containers for superior maneuverability and modular interoperability.
To learn more about jobsite sorting after collection and hauling, including tipping, picking, sorting, containerization, transport, diversion, and disposal, read part two.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.