Local Government NSW (LGNSW) commissioned the Waste Transformation Research Hub (WTRH) at the University of Sydney to develop the guide, which has been published in conjunction with ‘Recycled Materials in Roads and Pavement: A Technical Review’.
Local Government NSW (LGNSW) President Linda Scott says the research is part of a push towards a circular economy in New South Wales.
“LGNSW has long advocated for an overhaul of the State’s waste and recycling management that recognises the need to transition to a circular economy, where waste is seen as a product, not a problem,” she says.
The University of Sydney research provides a technical overview for council engineers on how to best use recycled plastics, glass, asphalt, concrete and other materials to make safe and durable roads and pavement.
“This research has produced a comprehensive guide that will make the process easier for councils, with the added benefits of better environmental outcomes and the creation of sustainable new jobs in the local recycled materials manufacturing sector,” she says.
“The research confirms the lead role councils play in recycling and waste management – not just collecting it, but also re-using it.”
Waste management is a critical issue in NSW, which generated more than 21 million tonnes of waste in 2017-18, a figure that is expected to grow to more than 31 million tonnes in the next 20 years.
“With the option of shipping waste overseas no longer open to Australia, we have to find a viable alternative to deal with it. Reusing it as a resource, through research such as this, not only fosters innovation, but it also creates new jobs, new economic streams and, of course, is better for our environment,” Scott says.
LGNSW provided University of Sydney’s Waste Transformation Research Hub team with $50,000 through its Research and Innovation Fund to produce a guide on the technical processes involved in turning recycled material into roads and pavements.
“LGNSW is proud to support this type of innovation as part of its leadership around waste and recycling management,” Scott says.