The goal is for at least 70% of the waste generated from constructions and demolitions to be recycled, said the Minister of Agriculture, Kostas Kadis, in his greeting at the “Workshop for the presentation of an innovative robotic method separation of waste from constructions and demolitions”, according to an announcement by the Press and Information Office.
It is added that the workshop in question took place within the framework of the research program “DEFEAT – Development of an innovative insulating fire-resistant building facade from Construction and Demolition Waste”.
It is also noted that the DEFEAT Program is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund and the Republic of Cyprus, through the RESTART Program 2016-2020 of the Cyprus Research and Innovation Foundation.
According to the announcement, Mr. Kadis said that the Program, which is implemented by Frederick University in collaboration with the Department of Environment of the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment, the Federation of Associations of Construction Contractors of Cyprus and several other private bodies, aims to develop a composite material from construction and demolition waste.
He said that this material will be resistant to fire, will be characterized by low thermal conductivity and suitable mechanical and fireproof properties and will be able to be used in the facade, either in existing or in new buildings, with obvious benefits and advantages both in terms of fire safety and and in terms of their energy efficiency.
The Minister also noted that as part of the Program, an innovative robotic method of separating construction and demolition waste was developed, through a detailed experimental study and on a pilot scale. “Today, through presentations by reputable speakers, we will have the opportunity to learn about the methodological approach that was applied to the design and implementation of this method, as well as how it works,” he said.
He pointed out that construction and demolition waste represents about a third of the total of approximately three billion tonnes of waste produced annually by economic activities and by households in the European Union. For this reason, Mr. Kadis continued, the European Commission has set as a priority the promotion of the circular management of said waste in the member states of the Union.
Mr. Kadis also said that in Cyprus they have ambitious European targets to increase source separation, recycling and re-use of recycled materials are adopted. Especially for construction and demolition waste, the aim is to recycle at least 70% of this waste.
The Minister stated that in the context of prevention, reduction and proper management of waste from constructions and demolitions, as well as limiting their uncontrolled disposal in fields, streams or landfills, the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment proceeded, through the Department of Environment, to preparation of the Waste Regulations of 2023, which are expected to be soon approved by the House of Representatives.
At the same time, Mr. Kadis pointed out that our Ministry encourages the private sector to create Construction and Demolition Waste Management facilities, as a result of which their number has increased dramatically, from two facilities in 2016 to 11 today.
“It is also considered important to create a Technical Committee to promote the use of recyclable materials resulting from the processing of waste from excavations, constructions and demolitions, with the aim of their more efficient and effective use”, he said.
At this stage, added, the 2nd Progress Report has been prepared for the implementation of the Action Plan prepared by the Commission. Through the Action Plan, among other things, the modification of the technical specifications of government projects is promoted, so as to introduce provisions for the use of recycled materials in them, which will be a very important development.
“The constructive synergy of the academic community, the private sector and government services ensures the successful implementation of these actions, for the benefit of society and the natural environment of our country”, concluded Mr. Kadis.