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Construction and Demolition (C&D) Recycling Program

What is it?
All Army installations have ongoing construction and/or demolition activities. Buildings, roads, parking areas, and utility systems are torn down, renovated, and constructed. Demolition quickly generates large quantities of waste. The types of wastes, -- wood, metals (copper, iron, and steel), plastic, drywall, concrete, etc. -- which have to be removed from a site are the same for both demolition and construction. But their condition and final disposition depend a lot on whether recycling and recovery of materials were planned into the process early, and there is someone at the local level to devote time and resources to explore alternatives to just dumping it all into a landfill.

What has the Army done?
As the Army implemented the Base Realignment and Closure Act (BRAC) of 2005, major new construction and facilities removal projects were programmed, planned, budgeted, and are now being executed. Simultaneously, policies and procedures were put into place to embed into the construction and facilities reduction processes, the mandatory requirement to divert at least 50 percent of the construction and demolition wastes generated during those projects through either reuse or recycling of construction materials. For example, by FY08 75 percent of the World War II wood buildings were removed from the inventory and the Installation Management Command s Facilities Reduction Program, managed by the Army Corps of Engineers (COE), achieved an 89 percent diversion rate during FY08.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
The Army must plan and program for the sustainable removal of excess, obsolete, and energy inefficient facilities. Expertise should be developed regionally to support installations to develop projects for the sustainable removal of facilities. We have Army experts in the art and science of sustainable facilities removal techniques, whose vast network of industry and academic contacts can be tapped to address specific installation problems. A near-term issue is the disposal of nearly 10 million relocatable buildings that were acquired to quickly adsorb the new modular forces until military construction built permanent structures.

Installations must report all of the C&D waste management activities within their boundaries, regardless of project/contract origin. The COE, Army and Air Force Exchange Service, and Defense Commissary Agency must ensure that the requirements of the executive order, Department of Defense (DoD) policy, and Army Regulations regarding C&D are met. Results must be reported through the agencys internal systems or consolidated with the installations solid waste and recycling data entered via Solid Waste Annual Reporting System, Web-based or SWARWeb.

Why is it important to the Army?
The Army has the largest real property inventory within the DoD, which is the largest within the US Government. As the Army transforms to meet future missions, our installations will remove outmoded, excess, and temporary building space. We must do this in a sustainable way because it is as important as how our Soldiers train to fight. There are global implications if we do not minimize what we put into landfills by recycling or reusing construction and demolition wastes.

 

 
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