Accelerated building in Israel in recent years has brought in its wake a significant increase in C&D waste. Out of some 7.5 tons of C&D waste that are generated in Israel each year (140% more than the total quantity of household waste generated each year), only about one million tons, or 15% of the total, reach regulated landfills, with the rest, some 6.5 million tons discarded illegally in open spaces, fields and roadsides.

The problem of C&D waste differs from the problem of household waste since there is no organized collection system for C&D waste by local authorities. Removal is by request only or by means of private entities. As a result, a large part of the waste finds its way to open spaces and roadsides.

C&D waste includes materials generated during the construction, renovation and demolition of buildings. These wastes are generated throughout the entire building process, a process that may last months or years. The average composition of C&D waste, in terms of weight, is: earth (sand, soil) 44%; scrap metal 51% and miscellaneous materials 4%.

The environmental and health impacts of the illegal disposal and treatment of C&D waste include soil and water contamination, air pollution as a result of fires, reduced property values, destruction of open spaces and landscape blight. In addition, heaps of C&D waste may include asbestos waste, which poses a significant health risk, especially in building sites which are transformed into playgrounds and residential buildings.

In light of these environmental and health risks, the Ministry of Environmental Protection has prepared a list and a map of red spots of construction waste in Israel. Many of these sites are situated in hydrologically-sensitive areas, posing a major contamination risk to surface and groundwater.

The environmental and health impacts of the illegal disposal of construction waste in open spaces include:

Degradation of surface and underground water sources

Soil pollution

Degradation of open spaces

Creation of fires and air pollution

Reduction in property values due to the high costs of waste removal


Aesthetic nuisances and neglect

Exposure to asbestos, since asbestos waste may be included.

“Waste Draws Waste”

C&D waste decomposes or releases materials, including hazardous materials, with a high environmental and health risk potential especially in the vicinity of residential areas and freshwater sources. The risk to public health may be compounded by supplementary materials which are added to this waste each year, due to innovations in the construction materials sector. These materials may lead to the contamination of water and land resources by leachates. Leachate tests conducted in dry waste landfills, which receive C&D waste, show lower quality leachates than household wastes.

Main Directions for Action

Treatment of C&D waste is of high priority in the Ministry of Environmental Protection. Cooperation between the Environmental Protection Ministry and other ministries, agencies and local authorities, which are legally responsible for treating C&D waste, is vital in order to solve the problem.

Regulated treatment would include the establishment of a collection system in local authorities which is also capable of responding to C&D waste generated by home renovations, a transport system for the waste to regulated landfills, accessible infrastructure for crushing and recycling in construction sites and transfer stations, and the availability of landfilling and recycling solutions in accordance with regional master plans. In parallel, legislation in local authorities should be advanced and government ministries should require the use of recycled C&D waste in public building and infrastructure projects. In addition, wide scale enforcement and rehabilitation of damaged areas should be initiated and implemented utilizing<

Ano da Publicação:
WARMER BULLETIN ENEWS #16-2007-March 20, 2007
Kit Strange/Warmer Bulletin
Email do Autor: