California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle)

Solid Waste Characterization

Construction and Demolition Waste Stream Composition Calculator

The Construction and Demolition (C&D) Waste Stream Composition Calculator is an analysis tool that jurisdictions can use to evaluate the material composition of the disposed C&D waste stream. The calculator was designed to be used in conjunction with the C&D visual characterization method guide. The data entry table in the calculator matches the reproducible data collection form found in Appendix D of the guide. It is strongly recommended that you become completely familiar with the guide before attempting to use the calculator.

When data is properly entered into the calculator, it can provide a statistical estimate of the composition of a given C&D waste stream. The calculator does this by taking the estimated volume percentage of each material type in a sample load, and combining it with the total volume of the sample load, to arrive at a volume for the material type. This volume is then converted to a weight, using the standardized volume-to-weight conversion factors found in Appendix F of the visual characterization method guide. The individual weights of each material type are summed across all samples and divided by the total weight of all samples to arrive at an average percentage of each material type, by weight, in the C&D waste stream. The step-by-step process, with examples, can be found in the “Data Analysis Procedures” section of the visual characterization method guide.

Important:

  1. The calculator is a Microsoft® Excel application, and you must have the Excel program in order to download and run this analysis tool.
  2. In Excel, you must also have the macro security set at Medium. (Select Tools > Macro > Security > on Security Levels tab > select Medium radio button.)
  3. Set your screen resolution to 1024 x768 pixels. (Select Start > Control Panel > Display > On Settings tab > adjust screen resolution to 1024 x 768 pixels.)

How to Use the Calculator

Start the download process by saving the file to your computer. (You may find it helpful to read all the steps below before starting the download.)

  • After selecting the link below, follow the remaining steps to save the file to your computer system.

Download the calculator (MS Excel, 133 KB)

  • Select Save on the File Download pop-up window.
  • Save the file (using Save As) to a location on your computer.
  • Open the calculator and choose Enable Macros on the pop-up window. If you do not see this choice, refer to note 2 above.
  • Ensure screen resolution is set to 1024 x768 pixels. (See note 3 above).
  • Select the large green button in the upper right-hand corner of the opening screen.
  • Follow the instructions printed on the main menu for data entry and analysis.

Waste Studies Home

Last updated: November 3, 2006
Solid Waste Characterization, http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/WasteChar/
Nancy Carr: Nancy.Carr@calrecycle.ca.gov (916) 341-6216