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Construction and demolition recycling rates climb

Strategic Materials’ Guelph, Ontario plant was built nearly 10 years ago and    processes straight color bottle, highly contaminated 3mix and windshield glass.
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Construction and demolition (C&D) recycling rates are on the rise across the country thanks to a favorable economic climate and pockets of friendly regulation.

C&D recycling rates are currently growing between 5 and 10 percent annually, according to William Turley, executive director of the Construction Materials Recycling Association based in Eola, Illinois near Chicago. The trade association, with around 160 members, represents a diverse group of companies across the C&D sector.

"We're seeing more people entering the business as well as bigger plants being put in," Turley said. The drive by many solid waste officials to promote recycling has helped increase the C&D recycling rates, he said. For example, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system helps promote recycling. The designation by the Green Building Council promotes environmental sustainability.

"We know that LEED is promoting a lot of this. I get a lot of phone calls from rather frantic architects wondering where they can send there C&D materials because they want to get LEED points. We’re seeing a lot of LEED action," Turley said.

Finding a market for the C&D material is often a challenge, however, Turley said. "We would like to see some more support for the markets. We need to see the closing of the circle and help from the government as far as buying this material," Turley said. more


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