Construction Waste Management

Construction and demolition waste
Construction and demolition waste

What is waste?

Waste is not just unwanted material, it includes:

  • Excavated material such as dirt, sandstone and soil
  • Construction, building and demolition waste such as asphalt, bricks, concrete, plasterboard, timber and vegetation
  • Asbestos and contaminated soil.

View Council's fact sheets on Demolition and Construction Waste as well as Waste Auditing for more information.

Transport waste to a lawful facility

Section 143 of the NSW Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 requires waste to be transported to a place that can lawfully accept it. The owner of the waste and the transporter are each guilty of an offence when waste is transported to a place that cannot lawfully be used as a waste facility. Relying on advice from others, such as consultants, contractors or managers of waste facilities, is not a defence for transporting waste to a place that cannot lawfully be used as a waste facility. The owner of the waste and the transporter can be ordered to clean up and pay for such waste to be taken to a lawful place

If a quote for managing waste is low, find out why. The company may be avoiding costs by transporting waste to a place that cannot lawfully be used as a waste facility. If waste is illegally dumped and harms the environment, the maximum penalty is $5 million or 7 years imprisonment

Avoiding fines and penalties

  • Know what types of waste will be generated during excavation, demolition and construction
  • Check the council development consent and environment protection licence for the waste facility to make sure they can lawfully accept the waste. Provide the waste facility with details of the waste (classification, origin and quantity)
  • Prepare, implement and adhere to a waste management plan that includes: 
    - Details of, and the waste management action proposed for, each type of waste 
    - Procedures that ensure the waste is transported to a lawful place 
    - A description of the roles and responsibilities of everyone who manages the waste, including the site supervisor and sub-contractors.
  • Regularly update the waste management plan to record how waste is managed and audit where waste is taken
  • Provide adequate supervision to ensure waste management plans are implemented and complied with, and regularly audit everyone who manages waste on your behalf
  • Provide training about the waste management plan and protecting the environment
  • Keep accurate written records such as:
    - Who transported the waste (company name, ABN, vehicle registration and driver details, date and time of transport, description of waste) 
    - Copies of waste dockets/receipts for the waste facility (date and time of delivery, name and address of the facility, its ABN, contact person).

Supplying information about waste

Council will conduct random audits of development sites to assess compliance with approved waste management plans. At any time, you can be asked to supply information about waste, such as:

  • Its type, classification, characteristics, composition or quantity
  • Its storage, transport, handling, transfer, disposal, processing, recycling, recovery, re-use or use; and
  • The hazards or potential harm to the environment or human health associated with waste or activities relating to waste.

When supplying information about waste, ensure all relevant information is disclosed, such as:

  • Waste assessment and classification reports, including sampling methodologies and laboratory analysis for potentially harmful materials
  • Written procedures and plans for managing waste, including handling and storage procedures, and incident response plans
  • Development applications, including waste management plans; and
  • Site assessments including contaminated site assessments, and environmental and geotechnical studies.

The maximum penalty for supplying false or misleading information about waste is $250,000.

Dob in a dumper

If you suspect someone is handling waste unlawfully or illegally dumping waste, contact Council on 9911 6555 or the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage on 131 555.

Page last updated on: 09/10/15

Report Illegal Dumping

Report illegal dumping by calling the NSW Environment line 131 555
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