Name an item and chances are it is made of plastic: bags; bottles; roads. Roads? Soon we could all be driving on roads made of plastic, after Cumbria County Council became the first local authority in England to successfully trial a new technique which involves mixing plastic material recycled from waste into the standard asphalt used for resurfacing. The council was so “very pleased” with the results that it has already used the plastic material for a £200,000 resurfacing project on the A7 in Carlisle and intends to roll it out across the county. Aside from using recycled waste, incorporating plastic in roads has significant environmental benefits: the plastic used to resurface the A7 was the equivalent of 500,000 plastic bottles and over 800,000 carrier bags. Stephen Hall, Cumbria County Council’s assistant director for Highways, Transport and Fleet, said: “Our industry does have a significant environmental impact – we use a lot of oil-based products and aggregate that comes out of quarries. So any opportunity that we get to try and mitigate some of that has to be of benefit.” Plastic fantastic.
October 17, 2017