Earth Exchange membership surges

Construction materials and sustainability website, Earth Exchange, has reported a surge in membership and interest as construction companies seek to reduce the costs of site waste management and source more locally-produced recycled and sustainable materials.
Alex Albon, operations director of Earth Exchange Limited says over 500 construction sites across the UK are operated by members who have joined the Earth Exchange website in recent weeks to capitalise on the efficiencies brings to waste management and resource use.
Earth Exchange is a membership website that allows sites with materials surpluses to link up with sites experiencing materials deficits and arrange exchanges instead of sending excess to landfill and buying in virgin resources.
“On current projections, it is conceivable that in 12 months’ time Earth Exchange members could have exchanged 7.25 million tonnes of construction waste thereby avoiding landfill taxes and improving their environmental performance. By this time they may also have cut road haulage by 9 million miles and reduced fuel use by 5.8 million litres, cutting operating costs and reducing the carbon footprint of their businesses,” said Albon.
He added: “Construction companies are increasingly turning to Earth Exchange to for help with resource efficiency and to cut operating costs. Members are also finding the site valuable in demonstrating to customers that they are committed to sustainability and take corporate social responsibility seriously.
“Membership of Earth Exchange has the potential to add a competitive edge to tender and contract bids. It also supports businesses in trialling leaner cleaner construction systems that meet government expectations for the industry to halve the amount of construction waste sent to landfill by 2012.”
Earth Exchange covers the entire UK with members ranging in size from large plcs with many of sites to small operators with a single site. Materials that can be exchanged via the website currently include soil, crushed aggregate, topsoil, subsoil, compost, bricks, blocks, paving and pipe.
Earth Exchange works by using real-time accurate mapping of actual and future construction sites – the locations where construction wastes are generated and where such wastes can be re-used. Members can state what and when materials will be available at each site and state what materials are required on their sites. Exchanges are made on terms agreed between members and can be swaps or trades. The site has been described as a major breakthrough for the construction industry. It means that for the first time there will be accurate mapping of construction activity in the UK and a simple and accessible method of streamlining procurement and waste management.