UPDATE: the legislation is now published and the Regulations are revoked effective 1st December 2013.
The UK government has signalled it intends to repeal the construction Site Waste Management Plan Regulations 2008 from 1st December 2013. DEFRA’s intentions can be found in its summary of responses to its consultation exercise carried out earlier this year.
The construction Site Waste Management Plan Regulations apply in England only, and create an obligation on organisations that are not regulated as Part A activities (under the Environmental Permitting Regulations) to put in place a waste management plan for construction projects in excess of 300,000 GBP. No such regulations have yet been enacted by the devolved administrations in Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales.
According to DEFRA, 24 respondents cited the lack of engagement with designers and architects as the main weakness of the Regulations and a reason to repeal. This confirmed industry feedback that Defra had received at earlier stakeholder meetings. Both respondents and those at stakeholder meetings stated that generally clients pass the plan requirement onto contractors, once the building has already been designed, thereby missing out on the greatest savings likely to arise from putting a waste management plan in place. The UK recycling support organisation WRAP is hoping to address this weakness in the supply chain with a new responsibility deal that focuses on the designing out of waste.
“SWMP legislation by-passes the construction design phase which also wields huge power and influence in the creation of resource-efficient outcomes e.g. by ‘designing-out’ waste and specifying recoverable/recyclable products/materials.”