Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Tasmania Builds Road From Single-Use Plastics, Glass and Printer Toner

Popular
Tasmania Builds Road From Single-Use Plastics, Glass and Printer Toner
Kingborough Council

A local government in Tasmania found a clever way to recycle single-use plastics and other landfill-bound waste by building a new road.

The 500-meter (1,640-foot) stretch outside the city of Hobart is made of approximately 173,600 plastic bags and packaging, as well as 82,500 glass bottle equivalents diverted from landfill, the Kingborough council announced Tuesday.


Toner from approximately 5,900 used printer cartridges and more than 33 tonnes of recycled asphalt were also repurposed to create the 330 tonnes of asphalt used to construct the road along Charlton Street in the town of Snug, the council added.

It's the first road of its kind in the Australian state.

The council built the road in order to reduce its environmental footprint, Kingborough Councillor Richard Atkinson told Australia's ABC News reported.

"If you work out how much single-use plastic is in this 500 meters of road, it's about equivalent of two years of single use plastic collected from Kingborough," he explained to the publication. "If it's successful we'll continue to use it for all the rest of our roads."

Although the product is more expensive, Atkinson said it would be cheaper for council in the long run. The road is estimated to last 15 percent longer than a regular asphalt road, according to ABC News.

"Council is thrilled to be leading the way in diverting products from landfill and using them in a sustainable and innovative way," Kingborough mayor Dean Winter in said Wednesday's announcement.

The council partnered with road construction company Downer, resource recovery and recycling companies Close the Loop and RED Group to build the road.

"Together with Kingborough Council and our partners, we have proven that with thought leadership and the tenacity to make a positive difference, we have set a new benchmark in the State when it comes to sustainability by creating new avenues to recycle and repurpose waste materials into new streams of use. It's all about pulling products, not pushing waste," Downer's general manager of pavements, Stuart Billing added in the announcement.

The concept of plastic roads is not new. In a fishing town on the southwest tip of India, a recycling plant collects discarded fishing nets and shreds them into material that's used to strengthen asphalt.

Rise and Resist activist group marched together to demand climate and racial justice. Steve Sanchez / Pacific Press / LightRocket / Getty Images

By Alexandria Villaseñor

This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story.

My journey to becoming an activist began in late 2018. During a trip to California to visit family, the Camp Fire broke out. At the time, it was the most devastating and destructive wildfire in California history. Thousands of acres and structures burned, and many lives were lost. Since then, California's wildfires have accelerated: This past year, we saw the first-ever "gigafire," and by the end of 2020, more than four million acres had burned.

Read More Show Less
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
U.S. Interior Secretary Deb Haaland announced a pair of climate-related secretarial orders on Friday, April 16. U.S. Department of the Interior

By Jessica Corbett

As the Biden administration reviews the U.S. government's federal fossil fuels program and faces pressure to block any new dirty energy development, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland won praise from environmentalists on Friday for issuing a pair of climate-related secretarial orders.

Read More Show Less
Trending
David Attenborough narrates "The Year Earth Changed," premiering globally April 16 on Apple TV+. Apple

Next week marks the second Earth Day of the coronavirus pandemic. While a year of lockdowns and travel restrictions has limited our ability to explore the natural world and gather with others for its defense, it is still possible to experience the wonder and inspiration from the safety of your home.

Read More Show Less

By Michael Svoboda

For April's bookshelf we take a cue from Earth Day and step back to look at the bigger picture. It wasn't climate change that motivated people to attend the teach-ins and protests that marked that first observance in 1970; it was pollution, the destruction of wild lands and habitats, and the consequent deaths of species.

Read More Show Less
An Amazon.com Inc. worker walks past a row of vans outside a distribution facility on Feb. 2, 2021 in Hawthorne, California. PATRICK T. FALLON / AFP via Getty Images

Over the past year, Amazon has significantly expanded its warehouses in Southern California, employing residents in communities that have suffered from high unemployment rates, The Guardian reports. But a new report shows the negative environmental impacts of the boom, highlighting its impact on low-income communities of color across Southern California.

Read More Show Less