Impact of Using Recycled Materials in the Construction Industry of the United Arab Emirates

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
The construction industry in the UAE has undergone massive transformation in the recent years. However, the country faces significant challenges in ensuring the sustainability of the industry. The main barrier to the achievement of sustainability relates to the increasing levels of wastes generated in the industry. The increased concerns about the amount of construction and demolition (C&D) waste generated in the country has led to different groups calling for increased recycling of the waste rather than disposal in landfills. The study investigates the benefits associated with recycling C&D waste. The study began with an examination of previous studies concerning the sources of waste, sustainable C&D management practices, and the barriers to recycling. Three construction sites and four demolition sites were visited, and interviews conducted with various project members. A qualitative interview was used to collect in-depth information regarding recycling practices at the sites. The most recycled materials at the construction sites include metals and timber. Cost and technology requirements hinder on-site recycling in the projects. However, recycling has significant social, economic, and environmental benefits that the industry should embrace. However, the government should increase its participation in ensuring recycling of materials in the industry. Additionally, project participants such as project managers and contractors should increase their awareness on the environmental impacts of C&D waste and incorporate effective waste minimization, recovery, and recycling strategies.
recycled materials, construction industry, United Arab Emirates (UAE), construction and demolition