Taking a pro-environmental measure, the Uttar Pradesh government has set a target of constructing 1500 km of roads with the help of single-use plastic by the end of the current financial year.
According to a proposal initiated by the public works department (PWD), this step would not only speed up the construction of roads but also help in getting rid of around 2,000 tonnes of single-use plastic. The public works department will look after the entire project.
The principal secretary of PWD, Nitin Ramesh Gokarn said that the use of plastic waste in the road construction had already been adopted in the schedule of rate (SOR) which provides a basic framework to evaluate cost estimate of the projects.
Gokarn said that as the price of other raw material and human labour has increased over the past few years that the existing schedule of rates needed to be revised.
He added that last year, the department had initiated the project with the construction of 12 roads across the state on a pilot basis. After the results were found satisfactory, now PWD has given the nod to the plan of constructing the 1500 km road with single-use plastic.
Gokarn further added that PWD will only be expanding its target in the upcoming years. "As of now, PWD has sanctioned the construction of 75 roads across a distance of 94 km. The work has been started on 32 roads covering a total length of 43 km," he said.
Officials said the department has managed to dispose of 63 tonnes of waste plastic in road construction.
Many roads have already been built in various parts of India using single-use plastic waste. As per the experts, the entire process is quite simple.
Using a shredding machine, the plastic waste material is firstly shredded to a particular size. The plastic waste coated aggregate is mixed with hot bitumen, and the resulting mix is used for road construction. The road laying temperature is 110-120 degrees Celsius.
In 2015, the Government of India made it compulsory for all road developers in the country to use plastic waste for road construction. This initiative also falls in line with the government's Swachh Bharat Abhiyan that aims at addressing India's garbage crisis.
In the last ten years, Chennai, Pune, Jamshedpur and Indore have seen successful roads getting constructed using the same technology.