Asphalt is the most commonly used paving material for roadways, parking lots, driveways, and other kinds of residential and commercial pavements. However, despite its immense popularity, very few paving companies are using asphalt correctly.
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Asphalt isn’t primarily classed as being environmentally friendly because the most popular and long-lasting type of asphalt material used in paving is hot mix asphalt. HMA requires energy to be heated, so it becomes malleable and generates greenhouse gas emissions.
Nevertheless, asphalt paving has the potential to become more eco-friendly. Here is how:
Porous pavement surfaces allow water to permeate the earth while promoting percolation by forming a natural cleaning process in its journey to replenish aquifers and the groundwater supply. This raises the water table, reduces erosion and flooding, decreases cap water pollution, and reduces sewer loads.
Porous pavement surfaces benefit the environment by filtering watering and allowing it to get absorbed in the soil below.
In contrast, other kinds of pavement assets lead to surface runoff, which gets impurities and chemicals mixed in the water, which is then transported to the local rivers and into the sea through the drains, causing water and marine pollution.
Asphalt is one of the most recycled construction materials there is. Your old asphalt pavement can be milled, and the asphalt can be reused to build new pavement structures. Asphalt millings are taken to the plant for grinding, are melted down, and used in hot mix asphalt. There is little to no difference in the strength and durability offered by new and recycled asphalt.
Perpetual pavement consists of multiple layers, most of which are made from recycled material. They are an environment-friendly solution as instead of removing and replacing the whole pavement, the existing pavement is repurposed.
Also, since there are multiple layers that last a long time, it requires little maintenance and mostly only needs resurfacing.
Using recycled asphalt in your paving projects not only cost you less than what you would have to pay for purchasing new asphalt, thus bringing down your raw material costs. But they also earn you tax benefits and incentives from the government.
And of course, they help the environment, garner positive press, help establish a positive brand image, and attract environmentally conscious clients. Therefore, it is wiser to opt for green solutions when it comes to asphalt paving.
There are some other paving solutions too that you can consider, like permeable pavers. However, whatever you decide, make sure the paving firm you are hiring has environmentally friendly practices and knows how to create green asphalt pavement surfaces, as not all firms are open to using recycled asphalt in their projects.