Designer's guide to cutting waste from construction projects

Benefits of designing out construction waste


There are many benefits for businesses working on construction projects in aiming to reduce waste from the design stage. These include:

  • reducing overall project costs
  • reducing the amount and cost of sending waste to landfill
  • reducing the carbon emissions of the project
  • improving the financial and environmental reputation of the businesses working on the project

The designing out waste (DoW) approach can also help businesses in construction projects work more closely and efficiently together, and help projects meet industry standards, such as the Code for Sustainable Homes.

Designing out waste from construction projects could enable your business to attract new clients that are interested in environmental issues. Working with clients and contractors to design out waste can also lead to cost savings and marketing opportunities for all parties.

Halving Waste to Landfill initiative

Halving Waste to Landfill is a commitment set up by WRAP. Signing up to the commitment can help businesses and their design teams - whether in-house or external - to demonstrate their environmental credentials and save money.

Halving Waste to Landfill encourages construction and design businesses to:

  • set a target for reducing waste - eg through cost-benefit analysis of targets based on national policy goals and peer group standards
  • identify opportunities - eg helping clients and contractors identify areas to use more recovered material and reduce waste
  • support teams in resource efficient design - eg making DoW resources available throughout your organisation and sharing with project partners
  • measure potential improvement - adopt a project-level key performance indicator, as well as quantified standards and targets, to demonstrate ongoing progress
  • report annually on corporate performance - eg include DoW targets and progress in your organisation's annual reporting, and provide data to the WRAP portal - enabling your organisation to demonstrate its waste reduction performance relative to competitors