Holistic Innovative Solutions for an Efficient Recycling and Recovery of Valuable Raw Materials from Complex Construction and Demolition Waste (HISER)

 

HISER
higher recovery of raw materials from Construction and Demolition Waste
HISER
higher recovery of raw materials from Construction and Demolition Waste

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Assessing the demolition activities in Europe

More than 35 interviews conducted with demolition sector experts to get first-hand information.

 

Valuable raw materials are available within demolition wastes. The demolition process producing those wastes is critical when it comes to the actual characteristics of the stocks produced by the process. And, as such, it is also determining the feasibility and economics of the recovery of those raw materials available in the wastes. According to some demolishers, demolition is in itself a waste management process. Furthermore, they know how to take the best out of the building at its end-of-life.
 
Nevertheless, the demolition world is complex and evolving. Ever more complex construction materials are appearing in demolition or refurbishment works, such as insulation materials or composites, which are sometimes difficult to recognize and often there are no established recycling routes for them yet. Limited access to buildings prior to works, short work periods, a subordination of demolition works to constructions works (due to the relative importance of each  and the tangible and measurable nature of the latter, rather than the intangibility and difficulty in monitoring of the former), subcontracting of demolition activities based on solely economic criteria, the regional legal framework, and the availability of recycling or waste management facilities, amongst others, lead to random success in performing efficient demolition.
 
It is one of the objectives of the HISER project to develop solutions and provide tools that will contribute to cost-effective and highly efficient demolition, particularly a BIM-based software tool and a tracking system. To support this, the European Commission has just launched a project for “Developing a Common EU Construction & Demolition Waste Management Protocol”. HISER will face the design of these solutions on the basis of a comprehensive study of the current situation of demolition and refurbishment works across Europe, which is being performed by means of dedicated interviews with demolition sector experts. Questions about conditions for the planning of demolition works (involving pre-demolition audits, permits, budgeting, etc.), particularities of works depending on the type of buildings and urban/rural environment, wastes occurring at their works, onsite sorting practices, legal requirements, equipment, personnel training, certification and supervision of demolition works or transport and processing of materials are being asked. In addition, a workshop in the annual convention of the European Demolition Association (EDA) also provided the opportunity to discuss those subjects first-hand with demolition contractors.
 
The information collected during the interviews is currently being analysed. The preliminary conclusions will be eventually validated by means of a survey that will be distributed to demolition contractors all over Europe through EDA channels.
 
 
David García
Tecnalia Research & Innovation

The project has received funding from the European Union's  Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No 642085.

 

This website reflects only the author’s views and the Agency is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.

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