21st June 2023

How Cora is reducing its construction waste

Construction waste is a big issue in the homebuilding sector, with five million tonnes ending up in landfill each year.

At Cora, we take the issue very seriously and work hard to make sure the vast majority (more than 97%) of our waste is put to better use.

Here, Luke Simmons, MD at Cora, explores how the company goes the extra mile to reduce and reuse our waste materials.

The problem with construction waste

Due to the sheer size of the projects, the construction industry one of the biggest producers of waste in the UK.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs estimated that in 2018, 62% of the UK’s total waste was created by the construction industry.

However, overall, the sector is better than most in finding ways to reuse waste materials.

According to the Construction Products Association, around 90% of construction waste is recovered from building sites, mainly used as aggregate.

Hearing our industry creates so much waste could for some be cause for concern, but I see it a different way.

I know if we transform the way we work as a sector, we can make a real impact – the chance to make a difference is in our hands.

What Cora are doing to reduce waste

At Cora, we are proud to say we divert more than 97% of construction waste away from landfill and put it to better use.

The vast majority of our recycling involves finding good use for excavated gravel and rock as aggregate in other sites.

However, we are also involved in other schemes, such as Crown’s Can Back project, which recycles old paint cans.  Last year, more than 300 paint tins were recycled via this scheme.

We monitor waste recovery levels at each of our sites and provide enhanced waste reporting to senior management.

Our main target now is lightweight compactable materials, particularly plastic and packaging.

To combat this, we are monitoring packaging delivered to site and provide feedback to suppliers to cut down on this waste.

Not only that, 100% of our office waste is recycled, which in 2021 was equivalent to 69 trees worth of paper.

Recycling is something we care deeply about, as we want to lead the way in sustainable and environmentally aware home construction.

Innovation is key

The construction industry has come far in reducing its waste, however, we know more can be done.

For me, innovation will be crucial for the sector to do even better – coming up with new ways of constructing homes that create less waste and finding new ways to put any unused materials to better use.

We are constantly looking for new ways to reduce our waste even further – and want to inspire others in the industry to take up the challenge too.

For more information on Cora’s commitment to sustainability, see here.