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Construction and Demolition Debris

Construction and demolition (C&D) debris is generated during the construction, renovation and demolition of buildings, roads and bridges. This debris can include:

  • bricks, concrete, rock and other masonry material
  • wood and pallets
  • metal
  • plaster and drywall
  • plumbing fixtures and piping
  • insulation
  • shingles and other roof coverings
  • reclaimed hardened asphalt pavement
  • glass, windows, doors and furniture
  • cardboard
  • landscape waste

It is estimated that C&D debris comprised more than 34 percent (3.2 million tons) of all of the waste that was disposed of in South Carolina in fiscal year 2017 (July 1, 2016 to June 30, 2017). Most C&D debris can be reused or recycled – resulting in significant environmental benefits as well as economic advantages for builders and contractors.

Reusing and/or recycling C&D debris:

  • conserves natural resources
  • reduces the environmental impact associated with the extraction of natural resources
  • potentially reduces building project expenses by limiting disposal costs and purchases of material
  • creates jobs and business opportunities in local communities and South Carolina's recycling industry
  • provides a tax benefit when recovered material is donated to qualified charities

Like other states, South Carolina faces two major obstacles in its efforts to increase recovery and recycling of C&D debris: inefficiency and lack of demand. It is often more efficient and less expensive for contractors/builders to dispose of material rather than investing time to separate, store and find a market for it.