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2020 / 2021 Edition

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EQAR calls for more construction materials recycling in EU countries

EQAR congress

European Quality Association for Recycling expresses concern over lack of urgency for standardization of quality-assured recycled materials

ACCORDING to EQAR, the level of construction and demolition (C&D) waste recycling varies remarkably in EU member states and that major legal steps, to ensure key C&D recycling targets are met, are severely lacking in some countries.  

Speaking at the Association’s public congress event held last month in Bratislava (Slovakia), Vincent Basuya, policy officer for sustainable construction at the EU Commission, warned that all EU countries are obliged to reuse at least 70% of recycled aggregates in their construction processes or to recycle C&D waste as part of the EU Waste Framework Directive.  

He went on to highlight some of the EU member states have not reached these set targets and this should not be the case, as major support and key initiatives are already being offered by the EU Commission (eg training courses and technological investment).  

He also provided an update on the progress of the EU Construction & Demolition Waste Management Protocol, which is expected to contain numerous examples of best practice on C&D waste recycling and to serve as an essential guide for action in EU member states. 

To run in parallel to the protocol, EQAR is calling for EU-wide regulation of quality-assured recycled construction materials. So far only five EU countries have adopted their own end-of-waste criteria with varying levels of regulation. 

Many delegates at the recent congress, therefore, expressed their disappointment that aspirations of the EU Commission to regulate the end-of-waste for recycling materials across Europe are not being pursued or recognized. EQAR will continue its role to promote the recycling of construction materials and the European standardization for quality-assured recycled construction materials.

Celebrating its 10th anniversary, the public congress event also saw two new construction materials recycling awards presented to Czech Republic firm GB Energy Holding and Bernegger GmbH of Austria. The companies were each praised and recognized for adopting the latest advances in construction and demolition waste recycling technology. 

Bernegger have commissioned a fully mobile wet-screening plant for processing soil and construction waste, while GB Energy Holding have developed an integrated proven process involving the recycling of demolition waste and reprocessing the material into ready-mixed concrete and concrete products.

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