The Government has confirmed that it intends to repeal the construction Site Waste Management Plans (SWMP) Regulations 2008 with effect from 1 October 2013.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) sought comments earlier this year on plans to do away with the regulations as part of the Government’s Red Tape Challenge.
It has now confirmed that, having reviewed the 169 responses that were received to this consultation, it has decided to go ahead with the repeal as part of a series of changes resulting from the Red Tape Challenge coming into effect on the next common commencement (1 October 2013).
The largest group of respondents was contractors, of whom 72 responded to the consultation, with 41 agreeing with the proposed repeal and 29 disagreeing. A surprisingly high number (55) said that they thought that they would continue to use SWMPs.
Defra noted that, although health and safety officers are not, strictly speaking, in the construction supply chain, the number of responses from them (19) supports the claim that they often acquire responsibility for SWMPs. Of the 19 respondents, 13 were in favour of the repeal, with six against.
SWMPs encourage the effective management of materials and were intended to ensure that waste is considered at all stages of a construction project — from design through to completion.
The Government has stressed that SWMPs and guidance will still be available for those that find them useful, although it argues that the landfill tax remains the most effective way to keep waste out of landfill.
Source: British Safety Council
Lighthouse Comments: The SWMP regulations did deem that they were going to be quite effective however they turned out not to as they did not have a direct impact on Principal Contractors requirements. There are a number of other regulations that do apply to waste but what has remained is that good site waste management can save a large amount of money.