Catalyzing Investment in Urban Sustainability
U.S.-Brazil Joint Initiative on
Urban Sustainability


Construction and Demolition Materials Management

U.S. EPA's construction and demolition (C&D) materials management policies focus on safe, beneficial use of the debris generated during construction, renovation, and demolition of buildings, roads, and bridges in order to conserve landfill space, avoid the resource impacts of new materials, create jobs, and reduce new project expenses.

Policy Overview

The primary goal of C&D policies is to ensure that materials are safely managed, so that potentially harmful debris-such as lead-based paint, asbestos, mercury, and polychlorinated biphenyls that historically circulated within the construction and maintenance of buildings-are not reintroduced into the building stock or the environment at unacceptable levels. With safety as the priority, C&D policies promote research and development to support best practices for C&D materials reduction and recovery, foster markets for construction materials and other recycled materials that can be incorporated into building products, and focus efforts to incorporate C&D materials issues and projects into broader green building programs. In addition, C&D policies advance the characterization and measurement of the C&D materials stream as well as further collaboration with key players in the construction, remodeling, historic preservation, and demolition industries to implement more resource-efficient practices. In Brazil, reducing informal sector construction activities is also a priority.

How to Apply this Policy

Key implementation actions include gathering information on regulations and contaminant-removal technologies that help ensure environmentally safe recycling and reuse of C&D materials in new building and transportation construction; updating Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines (CPG) information on recycled content in construction and transportation products, as well as the Product Supplier Database; strengthening the language of C&D materials management practices in building standards; working with state contacts to assemble the most current state C&D measurement and characterization reports; and partnering with manufacturers, generators, recyclers, and trade associations to initiate a roadmap to increase C&D material recycling by identifying principle barriers to all C&D materials recovery, actions to overcome these barriers, and a plan to implement those actions.

Contact Information
Ksenija Janjic 
U.S. EPA, Office of Resource Conservation & Recovery
Phone: +1 (703) 347-0376

East Rutherford, New Jersey

U.S. EPA and the Meadowlands Stadium Company signed a memorandum of understanding that outlined plans to incorporate environmentally friendly materials and practices into the construction and operation of the new Meadowlands Stadium for the New York Jets and New York Giants, which opened in 2010. The agreement includes a goal of recycling 75 percent of construction waste.