Recycling of construction materials: Importance for the circular economy

Every two years, the German construction industry's "Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau" initiative publishes the latest data on the occurrence and origins of mineral construction waste and according recycling quotas on the basis of information from the German Federal Statistical Office.

The life cycle of mineral construction waste

According to the current monitoring report of the "Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau" initiative, approx. 58.5 million tonnes of construction waste and 16.0 million tonnes of road rubble were generated in Germany in 2016, which were processed into recycled aggregates. In 2016, the recycling rate was 77.7% for construction waste and 95.4% for road rubble. Overall, Germany thus reaches a recycling rate for construction and demolition waste of 89.8%..

Bundesverband Baustoffe - Steine und Erden e. V. (Federal Association of Building Materials - Stones and Earths) as editor of the report also reports that the total demand for aggregates in the German construction industry in 2016 amounted to 566.5 million tonnes. With a share of 12.7%, recycled aggregates cover a significant part of this demand and thus contribute to the conservation of resources for gravel, sand and natural stones.

Impact of mineral waste recycling and recycled aggregates

Origin of aggregates for the construction sector (Data source: Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau, Mineralische Bauabfälle Monitoring 2016, Bundesverband Baustoffe – Steine und Erden e. V., Berlin, December 2018)

Area of recovery and reuse of secondary and recycled aggregates

Recycled aggregates by area of reuse (Data source: Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau, Mineralische Bauabfälle Monitoring 2016, Bundesverband Baustoffe – Steine und Erden e. V., Berlin, December 2018)

Development since 2006

Recycling aggregate: Development of production volumes

Development of recycled aggregate production in Germany (Data source: Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau, Mineralische Bauabfälle Monitoring for the years 2006 to 2016, Bundesverband Baustoffe – Steine und Erden e. V., Berlin)

The "Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau" initiative

"Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau" is an initiative of the construction materials industry, the construction industry and the waste disposal industry, which has been involved in promoting closed material cycles in the construction sector for 20 years. The focus is on mineral construction waste, the largest material flow within the German waste balance.
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Fokus Mineralabfälle wie z.B. Bauschutt im Monitoring-Bericht der Kreislaufwirtschaft Bau