Recycling initiative investigated

In an industry leading initiative, the City of Canterbury Bankstown, New South Wales (NSW), will investigate the use of recycled glass in road base.

Mayor, Khal Asfour, described the project as a potential game changer for the construction industry, waste industry and all levels of governments.

“Glass is used in the production of concrete and asphalt (top layer of roads), but developing it into a base and sub-base (underneath layer of the road) is something that has never been fully explored.

An estimated more than five million tonne of recycled material is used in road base in NSW each year, with 10,000 tonne in Canterbury-Bankstown alone - the base being the most important part of the road, because it’s the foundations, providing support and stability.

The Kelso Waste Facility will be the home for the investigation, after Council was awarded a $179,000 grant from the NSW Environment Protection Authority, through the Waste Less Recycle More funding initiative.

“The exciting part of this project is whether the glass we recycle can be used in a mix to achieve the consistency and strength required. We’re quietly confident it can be achieved,” Mayor Asfour said.

“Imagine if we prove this is possible and can then use the 8,500 tonne of glass we recycle in Canterbury-Bankstown each year, for this purpose.

“The money saved will be in the tens of thousands a year and that’s just in our City.

“It is an opportunity for us to be at the forefront of tomorrow’s technology and assert ourselves as a leader in being a cleaner and greener sustainable City - a Smart City!

“Ever since China introduced tougher restrictions on the types of recyclables it accepts, through its National Sword Policy, the waste industry has been trying to find local recycling solutions for many materials, including glass. This could very well be the answer.

“If this trial works, we have not only found a new local use and market for glass, but may have also discovered a solution for stockpiled waste glass, which is sometimes diverted to landfill.”