Waste prevention is not only the first principle of the circular economy in accordance with the current Waste Management Act (KrWG). Examination of all production and consumption processes for the purpose of optimisation, i.e. the ongoing reduction or complete prevention of waste, should be the primary goal of all waste management efforts.
Moreover, waste prevention is pivotal for resource conservation. Efforts to extend the lifespan of products, reduce material input during production, intensify their use period, and many other approaches result in raw material input reduction and resource consumption. In addition, total waste volumes are reduced across the entire production chain.
The building and construction sector in particular is associated with enormous raw material demand. Mineral waste volumes are considerable higher than waste mass flows arising from any other sector. However, the foodstuff industry produces an annual total 80 kg of waste per capita. Both the ethics of this statistic, and the fact that agriculture and foodstuff production in itself are associated with high resource consumption and environmental burdens, are highly questionable.