Why you can’t put plasterboard in a skip

Plasterboard is a critical component in modern construction, with more than one million tonnes of the material being manufactured in Australia every single year.  However, getting rid of plasterboard is not as easy as simply throwing it in a skip bin. This is somewhat problematic, considering that about 10-25 percent of all delivered plasterboard is wasted, according to figures reported by Arthur Lyons, former Head of Quality at Leicester School of Architecture.

Additional research indicates that gypsum (the inorganic compound found in plasterboard, chalk, fertiliser and more) can produce hydrogen sulphide gas when combined with biodegradable materials. With this in mind, it should come as little surprise that there are strict laws in place surrounding the disposal of gypsum products in Australia.

What’s the easiest way to get rid of plasterboard?

The best way to dispose of your plasterboard is largely dependent on the size of the job and how much material you need to get rid of.

For example, if you’re carrying out extensive renovations on your home, building a new space or demolishing an entire house, it goes without saying that you’re going to have a sizable amount of plasterboard on your hands. In this scenario, the easiest way to keep the gypsum material separated from other waste is to hire a skip bin and keep it specifically dedicated to plasterboard.

Alternatively, if you’re looking to dispose of a relatively small amount of plasterboard, you can also keep the gypsum contained by using heavy-duty waste bags.

Whichever method you opt for, be sure to strip the plasterboard of as many contaminants as possible before disposing of it. This may include removing screws, nails, plastic, insulation and other foreign material.

How is plasterboard recycled?

Plasterboard is highly recyclable. Using our state-of-the-art sorting process, we’ll do everything we can to recycle any usable material and further minimise environmental impact. As the NSW Environment Protection Authority noted, big, undamaged slabs of plasterboard may be repurposed and used again in construction, while smaller pieces are recycled and transformed into pottery, road surfaces, soil conditioner and new plasterboard.

Is plasterboard harmful to my health?

If you’re in the construction industry or frequently work with plasterboard, you’ll be pleased to know that it is not hazardous to your health in normal circumstances. When disposed of in mixed waste landfills, however, there is a risk that chemical reactions between gypsum and other materials may lead to the release of hydrogen sulphide. This colourless gas is flammable, corrosive and poisonous, and can be harmful to both humans and the environment. Thankfully, this risk is easily mitigated by following best disposal practices and keeping gypsum products separated when putting waste into your skip bins.

Are you looking for a skip bin in Perth? With a range of options to suit both residential and commercial needs, West Bin is your first port of call when it comes to hiring a skip bin in WA. Give us a call today to find out more.

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