Defra responds to Site Waste Management Plan consultation

16th September 2013

The Department of Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has announced that the Government will be repealing the construction Site Waste Management Plan (SWMP) regulations 2008.

Along with nearly 170 other organisations, EAUC Members issued a response to the consultation in July 2013. The consultation, led by Defra, proposed the repeal of the construction SWMP regulations as part of the Government's Red Tape Challenge, which is designed to remove unnecessary legislation to free-up business. However like many of the respondents, EAUC Members believed that while the regulations are in need of significant improvement, they do help institutions manage, reduce and/or recycle their construction waste – something that would be missing should the regulations be repealed completely.

Overall, respondents to the consultation were split evenly on whether the regulations should be repealed or not. However the vast majority (73%), including EAUC Members, stated that they were likely to carry on using Site Waste Management Plans as a tool even if the regulations were withdrawn. Despite this, the Government concluded that the impact of repealing the Regulations would have a minimal impact on reducing construction waste and keeping it out of landfill and would provide a cost savings to businesses.

Daniel O’Connor, who helped the EAUC collate Member responses, comments:

“This decision will undermine the work that has developed over the last few years. However, that work is not in vain. Those who desire resource efficiency in construction sector have the tools, processes and procedures in place to cut costs, future proof and get ahead of the competition - and win tenders as a result.

I am sure universities will specify some kind of SWMP in their tenders - not least because of the requirement to report construction data in the annual EMR data (for the time being).”

To view the full response from Defra, click here.

To view the EAUC's SWMP consultation response or to see all EAUC consultation responses, click here.

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