Springfield, MO

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Construction waste must be dealt with, DNR says

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The illegal disposal of construction and demolition waste is a major problem in many parts of the state, according to a news release from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR reports it routinely receives questions on how to dispose of this material from contractors and homeowners, along with many complaints about people who dump or burn these materials illegally.

Illegal disposal of construction and demolition waste, which includes all construction or demolition materials and roofing and remodeling debris, is a problem for both people and the environment. Illegal construction and demolition dumps decrease property values and create habitats in which insect and animal pests thrive. These sites can also cause long-term environmental pollution by leaching contaminants into Missouri's water resources.

Construction and demolition projects can produce large amounts of reusable and recoverable materials that can be sold or used in other projects. DNR supports and promotes this activity. Normally, all sorting of materials for recovery must occur on the site where the construction and demolition occurs.

However, DNR can approve facilities for the off-site processing of construction and demolition waste, including sorting of materials. Such facilities must be approved by DNR before receiving any waste. Waste remaining after the completion of reuse and recovery activities must be disposed of at a permitted sanitary landfill, demolition landfill or transfer station.

Cities and counties that issue building permits for construction and demolition activities are required to provide the legal disposal requirements to the permit applicant. All records and receipts for construction and demolition disposal activities must be maintained for a year by the person responsible for the activity, and they must be provided to DNR upon request.

Clean fill material, such as uncontaminated soil, rock, sand, gravel, concrete, asphaltic concrete, cinder blocks, brick and minimal amounts of wood and metal, may also be a product of construction and demolition. Disposal or use of clean fill is not regulated unless it becomes contaminated with other construction and demolition waste materials.

Clean fill may be used for fill, reclamation or other beneficial uses without prior approval.

Illegal disposal of solid waste by dumping, burial or open burning can result in civil penalties of $1,000 per day per violation for the contractor, hauler or property owner where the disposal occurs. Criminal disposal of solid waste is a misdemeanor punishable by fines of up to $20,000 or one year in jail.

For more information on construction and demolition waste disposal, contact the DNR Technical Assistance Program at 800-361-4827. The technical bulletin, "Managing Construction and Demolition Waste" is available on the World Wide Web at

or by request at the above 800 number.

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