HCFI Round Table Environment Expert Zoom Meeting on “Construction and Demolition Waste (C & D Waste) Management - Issues and Challenges – Part 1”


Dr Veena Aggarwal, Consultant Womens’ Health, CMD and Editor-in-Chief, IJCP Group & Medtalks Trustee, Dr KK’s Heart Care Foundation of India    27 December 2022

December 4, 2022, Sunday, 12 noon – 1 pm

  • Construction and demolition (C&D) waste is waste generated from construction activity, renovation, repair and demolition of houses, buildings, roads, bridges, etc. 
  • The major components of C&D waste are cement concrete (demolished), broken bricks, broken cement plaster, steel, rubble, broken stone, broken timber and wood, soil and sand and gravel. About 70% of C&D waste consists of mixed sand and soil.
  • Management of C&D waste particularly in towns and cities is a big challenge. It is generally dumped in landfills, where recycling facilities are lacking. It is also an important source of air pollution, especially in Delhi-NCR area. Not just air pollution, it is also a concern for land and water pollution too.
  • Earlier C&D waste was covered under the then existing Municipal Solid Wastes (Management and Handling) Rules 2000. In 2016, the MoEF, Government of India notified a separate rule called Construction and demolition waste management Rule 2016. There rules are applicable to every waste resulting from construction, remodeling, repair and demolition of any civic structure of individual or any organization or authority, which generates Construction and demolition waste as building material, debris etc. In 2017, CPCB also issued guidelines on the management of C&D waste. 
  • There is a huge gap between generation and processing or recycling of Construction and demolition waste. The waste that is not processed or recycled finds its way either to landfill sites or is dumped in the roadside or flood plain, forest area, drain side.
  • The total construction market in India is over Rs. 900,000 Cr per annum. Construction industry is growing at twice the world average. Construction and demolition go side by side; hence, C&D waste is generated. In India, the annual generation of C&D waste in 2018 was 100 million MT of Construction and demolition waste is generated. In Delhi, the amount of C&D waste is 7000 tonnes per day.
  • Metal, wood, plastic are not found in C&D waste. We find soil, sand, aggregates and chips.
  • To manage C&D waste it is important to estimate it. Estimation will depend only on the progress of the construction.
  • In 2000, TIFAC (Technology Information, Forecasting & Assessment) found that for new construction, around 40-60 kg/sq m of C&D waste is generated; for building repair, it is around 40-50 kg/sq m and for demolition of buildings, it is around 300-500 kg/sq m. This needs to be revisited.
  • In 2017-18, IIT Kanpur conducted a study where they found that from 7000 metric tonnes waste of Delhi, 6.5 tonnes/day of PM10 & PM2.5 is generated.
  • If C&D waste is properly managed, then up to 95-98% can be recycled.
  • From construction and demolition waste we get soil, sand, recycled aggregate and recycled concrete aggregate. From these, value-added products like kerb stones, paver blocks, tiles, brick blocks are made nowadays.
  • In India, the journey of C&D waste started in 2005. The first plant came up in Delhi at the time of Commonwealth Games in 2009. In 2014, the Indian Concrete Institute (ICI) and CPWD together made guidelines for reuse and recycle of construction and demolition waste, from generation to disposal process to use of recycled products. In 2015, UN made a guideline and in 2016, GIZ made another report. The construction and demolition waste management rules were formulated only in 2016 by the government. CPCB made its guidelines in 2017. In the same year, GIZ made training manual for this. In 2018, NITI Aayog made a report. In 2018, BMTPC developed guidelines on C&D waste recycling. After great efforts, in 2016 Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) incorporated it into IS 383. The specifications and rates have been finalized along with CPWD, but they are not being used.
  • The C&D waste management rules are for every individual, local bodies, state governments, bulk waste generators, pollution control boards, CPCB and also for the central Government.
  • The quality of recycled aggregates from mixed C&D waste has been tested for six months and was found to be safe. 
  • In Delhi, out of the 7000 MT of waste generated, ~6500 MT is collected per day. Out of this, 5000 reaches the plants and 1500 goes to the landfill sites.
  • There are collection centres in every ward where small generators can dispose of their construction and demolition waste at designated sites, from there the MCD collects it and takes it to the plants.
  • Bulk waste generators directly dispose of the waste at the plants.
  • The plant in Shastri Park, Shahdara was started in 2015 with a capacity of 500 tonnes, now the capacity has increased to 1000 tonnes per day. One of the most advanced wet processing technology has been adopted in this processing facility.
  • The first plant in Jahangirpuri began with capacity of 500 MT and was further expanded to 2000 MT.
  • Mundka waste processing facility has processed 1.5 lakh MT of C&D waste since its inception. The Bakkarwala processing facility has processed 2.5 lakh MT of C&D waste since inception.
  • So far, these projects have processed around 80 lakhs of C&D waste. The government of India has made it compulsory to install one such plant in cities with a population of above 10 lakh. 
  • For air quality management, water sprinklers are used during unloading and operations. Recycled water is used for wet processing. Greenery has been developed to attenuate noise.
  • If we generate 100 tonnes waste, from this 50% is soil. Soil and sand can be separated in the plant. 5% recycled concrete aggregate is recovered; 24% recycled aggregates, 15% manufacturer’s sand, 1-5% plastic, iron etc. Value-added produces like bike kerb stones, concrete blocks, brick blocks, paver blocks and tiles are made from this.
  • All bus stops in Delhi during Commonwealth Games were renovated with these tiles. All the material used in the new Supreme Court building is from recycled material.
  • Processing of the C&D waste is done by using state of the art wet/dry process technology.
  • Reuse of C&D waste will reduce burden on dumpsites. City will be cleaner; drain clogging will be less. Useful products made out of recycled waste can be again used by the building industry. It will save natural resources.
  • Separation of concrete waste and non-concrete waste greatly increases financial viability.
  • Way forward: Seamless integration from demolition to processing, incentive to waste generator for sale of C&D waste and concession on purchase of recovered material including value-added products.
  • The challenges we face are sector-specific and geographic-specific. The enforcement cannot be the same across the country has to be different.
  • 40% of the total waste in Delhi is C&D waste, which contributes to 650 units of ppm. This needs serious attention as to how strict enforcement right from generation to disposal happens. Proper management of C&D waste may lead to improvement in air pollution with Delhi being an urban island.
  • Circularity in waste means where every bit can be reused and recycled for many productive things.
  • There are so many constructions going on in Delhi but where the waste goes is not defined. No accountability, no transparency. Data compilation is a big challenge.
  • It should not be looked as NIMBY (not in my backyard) factors but as CIMBY (circularity in my backyard) factors. Cimby has to be practiced in such a way that this particular waste which contributes to 40% of waste in Delhi needs to be returned back to the society. Everything should be highly priced and not be given on discount. People should be given incentives, which can be in the form of tax rebate, enhance FAR, rebate on building fee etc. 
  • When the municipal corporation sanctions any building plan then it should put a condition how they will dispose of the construction and demolition waste and how they will comply. Implementation is poor. 
  • The management at the level of local bodies needs to be strengthened so that all these conditions that are imposed during sanction of plan are really monitored and seen that they are implemented.
  • Construction and demolition waste is being dumped in the green belts, where trees and shrubs die with time.
  • The products made from construction and demolition waste are good for non-load bearing structures. 
  • It has been made mandatory for the contractors to at least use 10% of these products in circulatory areas.
  • Every department should have an environment department for awareness about the rules, which usually do not percolate down. People should be aware of the repercussions of not following the rules.




Dr Anil Kumar 

Mr Pradeep Khandelwal

Mr Sanjiv Kumar

Dr Sanjeev Agrawal

Mr Neeraj Tyagi

Dr Dipankar Saha

Mr PK Jain

Mr Vikas Singhal

Dr S Sharma

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