Tasmania Builds Road From Single-Use Plastics, Glass and Printer Toner
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.
Kingborough has built a road with soft plastics & glass in a first for Tasmania! With partners Downer, Close the Lo… https://t.co/uaBuB7y92h— Kingborough Council (@Kingborough Council)1544488105.0
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.
A Fishing Town in India Is Building a Road to a Plastic-Free Ocean https://t.co/1J9FjLTEgj @savingoceans @PlasticPollutes— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1527978903.0
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One city in New Zealand knows what its priorities are.
Dunedin, the second largest city on New Zealand's South Island, has closed a popular road to protect a mother sea lion and her pup, The Guardian reported.
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By Jeff Masters, Ph.D.
Earth had its second-warmest year on record in 2020, just 0.02 degrees Celsius (0.04°F) behind the record set in 2016, and 0.98 degrees Celsius (1.76°F) above the 20th-century average, NOAA reported January 14.
Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for 2020, the second-warmest year the globe has seen since record-keeping began in 1880, according to NOAA. Record-high annual temperatures over land and ocean surfaces were measured across parts of Europe, Asia, southern North America, South America, and across parts of the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific oceans. No land or ocean areas were record cold for the year. NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information
Figure 2. Total ocean heat content (OHC) in the top 2000 meters from 1958-2020. Cheng et al., Upper Ocean Temperatures Hit Record High in 2020, Advances in Atmospheric Sciences
Figure 3. Departure of sea surface temperature from average in the benchmark Niño 3.4 region of the eastern tropical Pacific (5°N-5°S, 170°W-120°W). Sea surface temperature were approximately one degree Celsius below average over the past month, characteristic of moderate La Niña conditions. Tropical Tidbits
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