What's the story behind industrial waste?

Posted on 30th January 2018

It may not come as a surprise to learn that industry is the top producer of waste in developed countries. There is a high amount of material rendered useless during manufacturing processes. Much of this could be reused or recycled, apart from hazardous waste, which requires proper disposal.

A large proportion of industrial waste is hazardous, because industrial processes often involve chemicals. Is your industry one of the highest producers of toxic waste? Look below to find out:


Waste created by building sites:
The construction industry, specifically building sites, is the UK's largest user of natural resources and produces huge amounts of waste. Whether you're a commercial builder working on a housing estate, or just having an extension on your kitchen, you should consider what you're doing with leftover materials.

Every year on building sites:

  • 400 million tonnes of material is used
  • 100 million tonnes of waste is produced
  • 25 million tonnes of construction waste is disposed to landfill
  • 13% of construction products end in a skip as waste product without ever being used, with a market value of approximately £1.5 billion each year.

The amount of waste produced by building sites makes up more than one-third of the UK's annual waste. This figure has gone up from 2008 when building sites created 109m tonnes of construction waste. AMA is dedicated to helping the environment and we recycle as much waste as possible.

These figures are for traditional waste, from site clearance, construction and road works. Here at AMA we wondered how the figures would change if we took into account the stereotypical builders diet of bacon rolls and a brew. We got in touch with an industry insider who gave us some figures.



That means the average builder creates 21.48kg of waste a year, not including any extra snack wrappings or newspapers they may throw away. It might not sound like a huge amount but it's the equivalent weight of a fully-grown poodle!

Construction waste
Construction waste can be defined as anything generated as a result of construction and then abandoned, regardless of whether it has been processed or stockpiled. It includes surplus materials from site clearance, excavation, construction, refurbishment, renovation, demolition and road works. Some of these materials can contain lead, asbestos or other hazardous substances, but others can be recycled. Below is a guide about what you should be recycling and reusing:

  • Wood waste can be shredded to create fibre and chip board as long as it is uncontaminated
  • Concrete and tarmac can be treated to create high quality aggregates
  • Plastic can be recycled if they are segregated to avoid contamination.
  • Excavated material and rubble can be crushed and reused
  • Drainage arisings can be used in engineering fill/landscaping
  • Leftover Paint can be mixed and used as undercoat
  • Return, sell or donate unused and salvaged materials

The world of waste management can be a confusing one, but AMA's team of dedicated, knowledgable staff are here to help. We are ready to clear your site, whether large or small, of all waste, and will dispose of everything we collect in the most responsible manner. Our team has extensive experience of working with a variety of customers to ensure that their expectations are always met and frequently exceeded.

Why not call us today on 0845 4638 437 to learn more about skip hire and site clearances that we can carry out, or to arrange a visit from our expert team?