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Building Materials Energy Systems Plumbing Systems Recycling We work with a great range of suppliers and the materials and services they offer. This section is broken into four major areas: Building Materials, Energy and Plumbing Systems and Recycling. Each section has a sub index at the top of the page.


Gypsum Board (Plasterboard)
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Plasterboard accounts for about 30 percent of residential construction waste, five kilograms per m2 of floor area or five m3 per tonne. Instead of buying Gypsum powder for your garden, use waste Gypsum Board which can be recycled on site by grinding up in a hired shredder machine and either spread on ground before topsoil is replaced or mixed with garden compost at the rate of about 2.75kg to 100kg of compost.


Offsite recycling – Plasterboard is essentially gypsum and paper and after it is ground it is commonly applied as a soil conditioner. Gypsum, the main ingredient improves soil condition (reduces compaction and improves water drainage, retention and conservation) while supplying essential nutrients (calcium and sulphur). Gypsum is a natural, non-toxic mineral and is not harmful to children or pets and even when applied at very high levels it will not damage soil or plants. Plasterboard is best recycled when dry so try to cover or store in a sheltered place such as the garage until collection.

Onsite recycling – For onsite disposal use clean unpainted standard plasterboard only (excluding wet area board and bracing board which may contain wax or fibreglass additives). Pulverize to piecessmaller than 2cm diameter and place below topsoil to accelerate breakdown of the product. Spread evenly and apply at a rate of up to 5kg per square metre (standard sheet is approx 20kg). Avoid wet areas as prolonged anaerobic conditions can cause possible sulfide gas formation. Check compliance with your local territorial authority beforehand. Information courtesy of

Waste deferral / Adding Thermal Mass
– It can be cost effective to store clean offcuts within internal wall spaces, providing the opportunity to recycle them at the end of the homes’ useful life.

Mark: Filling wall cavities with 'solid' packing of Gibboard offcuts provides additional thermal mass within the home, it is best to use in living spaces that benefit from free solar energy or at least rooms that have frequent heating to avoid additional warm-up load. Offcuts should be cut down or scored and folded ‘concertina’ style up to four sheets max to allowfor future wiring. (Nine sheets for solid packing where no future services planned) Care must be taken to select wall cavities withoutinsulation, wiring, plumbing or HVAC ducts such as wardrobes, hot water cupboards, stairwells or garages. Place pieces securely to avoid rattling and consider the sequence of lining rooms to ensure vacant walls are available as each room is completed.

Waste Minimisation (Back to Top)



WasteMINZ’s vision is to deliver value through the facilitation and shaping of best practice for environmentally and economically sustainable waste minimisation strategy in NZ, by being:

  • A resource for championing sustainable business and waste minimisation
  • Active in the participation in the development of future environmental and economic solutions and policy for waste minimisation

ITM Building Guide

ITM: How To Minimise Construction Waste

ITM has provided a great brochure dealing with latest practices to reduce construction watse.

View the PDF here.



REBRI stands for Resource Efficiency in the Building and Related Industries. Resource efficiency is all about using materials, energy, time and money more effectively.

REBRI's main focus is on reducing the amount of building material wastes generated at C&D sites that would otherwise be sent to landfill. Find out more about how you can benefit by practising the three Rs of waste minimisation.

Recycled Polystyrene
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Poly Palace

Poly Palace

Poly Palace is an independent business in Porirua City that produces and sells high quality building insulation made from recycled polystyrene.

Waste polystyrene is a big problem when it is landfilled because it takes up a lot of space, weighs very little and takes a long time to break down.  Waste polystyrene is far better locked up in housing insulation, resulting in better health and living standards.  Not only that, the recovery and recycling of polystyrene into floor insulation at Poly Palace creates real employment and community development opportunities from waste.

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