India recycles only 1% of its demolition waste: Centre for Science and Environment.

28 August 2020.


According to a report released by Delhi –based non-profit organisation, Centre For Science and Environment ( CSE) , India uses only 1% of  its construction and demolition waste.

Highlights of the report:

  • According to the Building Material Promotion Council, India generates 150million of C&D waste every year. However, the official recycling  capacity is only 6,500 tonnes per day- just 1%.
  • Unofficial estimates of the total waste generated in the country put the figure at three-five times more than the official estimate.
  •  As many as 53 cities were expected to set up recycling facilities to recover material from C&D waste by 2017 — but only 13 cities have done that by 2020.
  • On the other hand demand for primary building material, including minerals, stone, sand, iron ore, aluminum and timber, is growing at fast rate.

Problems created:

  •  Heaps of concrete, bricks and metal waste from construction choke waterbodies, green areas and public spaces in Indian cities.
  • Toxic dust particles from the debris pollute the air where as cities have to meet a target to reduce their particulate pollution by 20-30 %by 2024, under the ongoing National Clean Air Programme.

Incentives to encourage recycling:

  • There are no known legal hurdles to using recycled C&D material in construction.
  • The Bureau of Indian Standards has allowed the use of concrete made from recycled material and processed C&D waste.
  • The Construction and Demolition Waste Rules and Regulations, 2016 have mandated reuse of recycled material.
  • Swachh Bharat Mission has recognised the need for C&D waste management.
  • Ranking points for C&D waste management for Swachh Survekshan 2021 have been doubled to 100 points, divided equally between management infrastructure and waste processing efficiency.

  Recommendations of the report:

  • Cities should have a C&D waste collection system in place; notified charges for C&D services and segregation of waste in five streams.
  •  Under waste processing efficiency criteria, ranking points will be awarded based on the percentage of collected waste that is processed and reused.
  • This recognition by the Swachh Bharat Mission and the C&D Waste Rules offers a good opportunity.
  • A substantial proportion of construction waste can be recycled and reused and brought back to construction to substitute naturally sourced material.
  •  This can help reduce energy intensity and environmental footprints of buildings and infrastructure

Posted by

Author and Educator

Leave a Reply