In our recent article we have discussed general information on recycling and the RRR approach; the three R’s stand for Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. We have also touched on common problems discussed in regard to current recycling processes in use. Staying faithful to the idea of three R’s, let us consider recycling in the construction industry – what can be recycled and how.

Most materials found on construction sites can be recycled or reused in some way, some of those materials can be reduced too. Materials found on construction sites will include; concrete, plasterboard, bricks, glass, wood, metal, plastic, rubber and paper. Those materials can be reused or recycled. Crushed concrete potentially being used as an aggregate, crushed bricks being used as landscape material or being reused in their original form as whole bricks again, if in good condition, and plasterboard being able to be reprocessed and reused as 100% recyclable material. Glass is another material which is great to recycle or reuse. When it comes to recycling, glass does not lose its quality when reworked therefore is considered a high-quality material to recycle.

There are a number of ways to reuse different materials, with lower quality materials being less versatile and still very handy. For instance, lower quality wood can be still used as firewood. Other ways to reuse wood, depending on its quality, is a part of the landscaping, home décor or as part of reuse in the construction itself. Each of those ways to reuse wood is very effective proving that even if we're left with only one possible use of a particular material (wood in this case) it will prove to be handy. 

Metal is another material found on the construction site which is great for reuse and recycling. We are a portable building company therefore in our buildings you will find steel. Steel is considered particularly strong and durable yet light. Steel is already being recycled in the construction industry and can be still recycled more. Some experts also believe that in the construction industry, in general, there is potential to reduce the amount of steel used while keeping the strength of the construction and good standards present.

The next on our list is plastic. Plastic is currently the most problematic material. Plastic brings us back to the discussion regarding recycling issues explored in our previous article. When we talk about plastic, we must realize that there are so many types of plastics out there that even some of the experts get confused on how to recycle these. The best approach to plastic is to focus on the experts' advice and to aim towards reducing as well as recycling whenever possible. Rubber is next on the list and is also a difficult material to recycle and to substitute. Still, rubber can be recycled and also potentially reused, particularly for DIY projects. Finally, there is paper. Paper is, of course, a recyclable material. It does lose on quality after each time it is being recycled but it still lowers the amounts of new paper use thanks to the recycling as well as, similar to wood, there are many ways to which different quality paper can be reused.

It is worth remembering that even if we personally don’t find reusing some of the materials handy for ourselves, there will always be another person who will find it handy for them. It is, therefore, worth recycling and reusing as one person's trash can truly be another person's treasure. Starting this new year 2020 we can leave the old unhelpful attitudes behind us and find the best opportunity to reduce reuse and recycle.