SUSTAINABILITY AND GREEN INITIATIVES
HEALTHY ROADWAYS DRIVE OUR FUTURE
BLACK IS THE NEW GREEN
As Americans surpass 3.2 trillion driving miles per year, America’s roadway maintenance is crucial to our economy. There are more than 2.6 million miles of paved roads in the United States, and an astounding 94 percent are surfaced with asphalt. In fact, there are approximately 18 billion tons of asphalt pavement on America’s roads. Between 85 and 90 percent of all runways at the nation's 3,364 commercial airports are surfaced with asphalt pavement, and more than 90 percent of the parking areas are surfaced with asphalt pavement.
Is this way of building roads a sustainable one? The answer is a resounding YES.
The asphalt industry is America’s number one recycler. In fact, asphalt pavement is 100 percent recyclable and reusable and it is America’s most reused pavement material. Thanks to new technologies known as “warm-mix” asphalt, a mix that can be produced at one of our three plants in Central Virginia and placed on roads at reduced temperatures. By using this innovation, we are now able to drastically diminish emissions, save fuel and improve the quality and lengthen the life span of pavement. Warm-mix is a major stepping stone in sustainable development, while simultaneously reducing the carbon footprint of the paving industry.
RAP + WARM MIX TECHNOLOGY
Each year, more than 100 million tons of asphalt pavement are reclaimed and recycled. Nearly 75 million tons of this reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) are combined with new materials and mixed into new asphalt pavement. This is the highest and best use of RAP because the asphalt cement in the old pavement is actually reactivated, becoming the binder for the new pavement and reducing the amounts of new binder that might be needed.
The RAP process, coupled with “warm-mix technology,” produces roadways that are equal to — and sometimes better than — roadways constructed with all-virgin materials. It also doesn’t hurt that taxpayers and road agencies save money, as well, and far greater natural resources are conserved.
Recycled asphalt reduces the quarrying, mining, and oil consumption required to create new asphalt.
The quality offered by ground, compacted recycled asphalt product is invaluable as a base foundation.
Through the use of RAP, less reclaimed asphalt is winding up in landfills. We stay on top of the latest technology to advance the percentage of asphalt that can be recycled, further reducing negative environmental impact.
Our proprietary product Aquaphalt is the first pre-mixed, permanent repair material that is enduring, high-performing and 100% environmentally friendly. Aquaphalt’s proprietary “green” binder reacts and hardens with solely water — unlike other asphalt patching products available on the market today containing toxic petroleum-based solvents with volatile organic compounds.
Aquaphalt drastically reduces costs, environmental risks, and traffic congestion. Not only is Aquaphalt easy to use (just pour, water, tamp) even in wet and cold conditions, but no special preparations or large crews are required, and roads may be open to traffic immediately. It has a 12 month shelf life, and features amazing skid and rutting resistance. Aquaphalt is backed by an unlimited curing guarantee and a 3-year warranty.
MAKING IT GREEN: THE BLAKE AT OAKLEIGH
Porous asphalt pavements are one of the most effective treatment methods for reducing pollution in stormwater runoff from pavements. Porous asphalt pavements have been used for more than thirty years around the U.S. to minimize the environmental impact of pavements. In addition to providing hard surfaces for parking and driving, they serve as stormwater storage and infiltration systems. In The Blake at Oakleigh project in Charlottesville, Virginia, our Project Manager found that porous asphalt offered the opportunity to manage stormwater storage in an environmentally friendly way, as it promoted infiltration, improved water quality, recharged groundwater, and kept the flow of runoff in line with non-developed areas and the busy roadway below. Porous asphalt has been used successfully in a variety of climates for parking lots and city streets and is perfect for freeze and thaw cycles.