By now there can hardly be a household in the country that is not aware of the concept of waste. Brown, blue, and green bins compete to block our pavements and driveways. Building workers anguish about which skip to deposit unwanted material. But this is all but a small price to pay in addressing one of the absurdities of the industrial consumer age.
Construction waste contributes around 100 million tonnes of waste to landfill (DEFRA), around 3x the amount of domestic waste.
Because in the past we have been empowered to dispose of what we no longer need, we have effectively plundered natural resources and, after a relatively short period of use, disposed of those resources into large holes dug into the landscape.
• To save the unnecessary disposal of hard-won resources, to limit the quantity of energy required to process raw materials, and to reduce the extent of landfill (or sea disposal) - we need to use our resources more carefully. Products can be made to enable reuse or, if easily disassembled, for the materials to be recycled into other products. Products using no or minimal virgin material should be favoured.