City to have plastic roads soon

Norms expected this month * Plastic trash problem to end
Report by: 
ROOPA LALL
Port Blair
11 Sep 2018

Like other cities in the country, the Municipal Council here has plans to make good use of plastic waste. Making durable roads and it has proved to be a popular solution to tackling waste also. Consequent to an order issued by the government in November 2015 making it mandatory for road developers to use waste plastic along with bituminous mixes for road construction to overcome the growing problem of disposal of plastic waste in India's urban centres, the Port Blair Municipal Council has formulated a policy to utilize the road building technology using waste plastic in different parts of the city.
The Municipal Council conducted a trial using mixture of plastic waste for surfacing of an internal road within the premises of the civic agency last year. Having seen the benefits of road resurfacing using plastic waste, the civic body now plans to erect all roads under the jurisdiction of the Municipal Council using plastic waste. Plastic waste generated in cities across the country has become a big headache for the municipal administrations. The new technology will help to sort out the problem of plastic trash in the city. The plastic trash collected by rag pickers or PMC staff will be utilised for mixture in the road material. The Municipal Council also plans to involve other construction agencies like APWD, Zilla Parishad, Rural Development agencies in the endeavour. The policy formulated for the purpose is already ready and expected to be notified this month, informed the Secretary, Municipal Council, Mr Suneel Anchipaka
As per the 2015 order issued by the Union Government, road developers are now required to use waste plastic along with hot mixes for constructing bitumen roads within 50 km of periphery of any city that has a population of over five lakh. In its guidelines for developers, the government said that in case of non-availability of waste plastic, the developer has to seek the approval of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highway for constructing only bitumen roads. This is to help overcome the growing problem of plastic waste disposal in India. The technology for this was developed by the ‘Plastic Man’ of India, Prof Rajagopalan Vasudevan, Professor of Chemistry at Thiagarajar College of Engineering, Madurai.
The entire process is very simple. The plastic waste material is first shredded to a particular size using a shredding machine. The aggregate mix is heated at 165°c and transferred to the mixing chamber, and the bitumen is heated to 160°c to result in good binding. It is important to monitor the temperature during heating. The shredded plastic waste is then added to the aggregate.  It gets coated uniformly over the aggregate within 30 to 60 seconds, giving an oily look. The plastic waste coated aggregate is mixed with hot bitumen and the resulting mix is used for road construction. The road laying temperature is between 110°c to 120°c. The roller used has a capacity of 8 tons. Plastic waste helps increase the strength of the road, reducing road fatigue. These roads have better resistance towards rain water and cold weather. Roads constructed using bitumen has life for around 2 years, while those containing plastic are expected to last for atleast 3 years.