Asphalt is the most commonly used material when it comes to paving road surfaces - and for good reason.
It has a lot of advantages compared to other options like concrete. It’s more affordable, durable, flexible, resilient, and more aesthetically pleasing.
But what many people don’t know about asphalt is that it is the most recycled material in the United States. Every year, about 80 percent of reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) is recycled, compared to the 60% for aluminum cans, 56 percent for newsprint, 37 percent for plastic soft drink bottles.
Sadly, many Americans are not even aware that asphalt is recyclable. That said, here are some facts about asphalt recycling you need to know starting now:
Despite the common misconception, asphalt is eco-friendly. While commercially used asphalt is made from petroleum, it still doesn’t harm the environment because this paving material does not rot. This means reclaimed asphalt can be reused again and again, reducing the need for non-renewable resources. At the same time, it takes less oil to produce compared to virgin asphalt.
While RAP is already a move that promotes sustainability, the asphalt industry takes it to another level by also developing warm mix asphalt (WMA) and recycling asphalt shingles (RAS) as new methods for recycling asphalt. This reduces the carbon footprint caused by producing new asphalt while earning more profits by lowering the production cost.
Asphalt recycling results in a 20% reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions due to the reduction of fuel usage by 21% during its production compared to virgin asphalt. Asphalt is not only helping the environment by being reused, even its production can drastically reduce our CO2 emissions.
Aside from taking less oil to produce which also reduces our dependence on foreign oil, recycled asphalt also requires less manpower and fewer hours to produce. This is why virgin asphalt is so much more expensive than recycled ones.
Not only is asphalt recyclable on its own, but it can also use additional waste material when being recycled. This means that other materials can be added into the recycled asphalt mix instead of being wasted. Old rubber tires, metal castings,
We all have our responsibility in caring for our planet while still striving for our growth and development as a nation. The asphalt industry is highly sensitive to this issue and is proudly promoting the use and production of recycled asphalt in the development of our roads and other pavements. Asphalt recycling benefits the taxpayers, the contractors, the country, and the planet as a whole.
Despite the misconceptions, asphalt continues to prove to be one of the most environmentally-friendly materials you can see around you today.
Want to learn more about asphalt, recycling, and how you can use it to get good pavement for your property?
Contact us at 1-800-ASPHALT or (763)-389-5267 Local today to learn more!