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Waste Management Provisions for Construction Contracts Part 1

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The contract established between an owner and a contractor should include provisions outlining acceptable waste management procedures. As a contractor, you’ll be the one dictating what happens on the project site, so it’s important to understand who is responsible for waste management or the lack thereof. Typically, the owner is responsible for determining how waste management will be handled and having this information included in the contract, but if you aren’t careful, this responsibility could be passed on to you unknowingly.

In this two-part article, the Nashville construction lawyers at Cotney Construction Law will discuss the waste management provisions that should be included in your construction contracts. Additionally, we will discuss some important definitions that may be included in your construction contracts in part two.

Representing Waste Reduction Requirements in Your Contract

There are a few ways to incorporate waste management requirements into a construction contract. If you and the owner have worked together before and trust each other, the owner may opt to simply state their goals in the contract and leave it up to you to make a good faith effort to meet those goals. Another way to represent waste reduction requirements is to include definitive minimum waste and debris diversion criteria.

Such a provision is often included in the demolition specifications of the contract as a numerical criterion (i.e., redirect from landfill disposal at least 80 percent of nontoxic and noncorrosive construction waste). The contractor may also request an incentives provision to provide additional payment for meeting specific diversion rates. A Nashville construction lawyer can assist you with negotiating the waste management requirements of your contract.

Note: The Whole Building Design Guide (WBDG), a program of the National Institute of Building Sciences, states that “requiring a specific LEED rating does not guarantee credit MR 2.1 or 2.2 (50 percent, and an additional 25 percent C&D waste diversion, respectively) will be attained.”

Submitting a Construction and Demolition Waste Management Plan

Generally, the Construction and Demolition (C&D) waste management plan that you include in your contract will feature:

  • Names of the individuals in charge of waste prevention and management.
  • Planned actions for minimizing solid waste generation.
  • Waste management meeting details.
  • Description of recycle/reuse procedures.
  • Waste characterization study.
  • Name of landfill and cost analysis.
  • Identification of local and regional reuse programs.
  • List of types of waste to be salvaged and recycled.
  • Percentage of waste diversion allowed.
  • Identification of recycling facilities to be used.
  • List of non-recycled and not-for-reuse materials.
  • Process for protecting recycled and salvaged materials from contamination.
  • Collection and transportation procedures for recycled and salvaged materials.
  • Estimated net cost or savings.

Our Nashville construction attorneys will continue to discuss this topic in part two.

If you would like to speak with a Nashville construction attorney, please contact us today.

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.