Disposing of Construction and Landscaping Material

Whenever you are working on a landscaping or construction job, there are always materials (both natural and man-made) that fall by the wayside. These materials can form large mounds or be gathered in bags, but always result in the question of “what do we do with it now?”

In the state of Utah, the owner, operator, or occupant of both residential and commercial premises are responsible for the management and disposal of all solid waste that is generated or accumulated on the property. This rule, which is under the Solid and Hazardous Waste Act, is “to protect human health, to prevent land, air and water pollution, and to conserve the state's natural, economic and energy resources by setting minimum performance standards for the proper management of solid wastes originating from residences, commercial, agricultural, and other sources.”

According to the Utah Administrative Code, solid waste includes construction and landscaping material such as:

  • Construction/demolition waste:
    • Concrete
    • Bricks
    • Rock and soil
    • Asphalt
    • Untreated wood
    • Rebar
  • Yard waste
    • Vegetative matter such as grass clippings and prunings
    • Discarded material

In order to follow the code, these waste materials must be taken to a facility that has been previously approved by the state to dispose of the waste in a proper manner. Incinerating, burning, or taking the waste to a site that does not have a permit is considered illegal.

In order to be considered a legal disposal site, the facility must apply for a permit from the state and agree to follow all monitoring and waste handling criteria. These rules help ensure that the waste is disposed of in a way that it will not cause any harm or damage to humans or to the environment. Part of the disposal process means recycling appropriate materials.

Many facilities are open to both contractors and to the general public and, for a disposal fee, allow you to drop off any of your solid waste. Make sure that you check with the facility for a complete list of accepted waste products.