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April 22, 2013

United States saved $2.2 billion in paving costs thanks to new practices, finds NAPA

LANHAM, MD.

Taxpayers in the United States saved over $2.2 billion during the 2011 paving season as a result of adopting sustainable construction practices, according to the Nation Asphalt Pavement Association (NAPA).

A survey conducted by NAPA and the Federal Highway Administration (FWHA) showed that 66.7 million tonnes of reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) and 1.2 million tonnes of reclaimed asphalt shingles (RAS) were used in paving projects during 2011.

“Asphalt pavements are the sustainable option for paving our nations’ roads and highways. With warm mix, we can use less energy to produce high-quality pavements, and RAP and RAS allow us reuse liquid asphalt, saving costs and preserving natural resources,” said John Keating, NAPA 2013 chairman, president and chief operating officer east of Oldcastle Materials Inc.

“While use of these technologies has increased dramatically, there is room to do more, and the asphalt pavement industry is ready to reach even higher levels of sustainability in road construction.”

The amount of RAP and RAS used in 2011 also saved 21.2 million barrels of liquid asphalt binder.

Using reclaimed materials also brings down the demand for aggregate resources and promotes energy reduction by using warm-mix asphalt technologies.

“The asphalt pavement industry has a long history of adapting new technologies and innovations to make a better product,” said NAPA president Mike Acott.

“This survey reflects that and demonstrates how asphalt producers are at the forefront of ensuring that our roads are built in an economical and sustainable manner.”

The use of RAP, RAS and warm mix asphalt has increased since the 2009 and 2010 surveys.

The U.S. used 66.7 million of RAP in 2011 which was an eight per cent increase from 2010 and a 52.5 per cent from 2009,

The FWHA made warm-mix asphalt part of its Ever Day Counts initiative in 2010 which promotes technologies to improve quality, sustainability and safety on highway projects.

“Warm mix brings with it so many benefits — reduced energy usage, better compaction in a wider range of temperatures, and more pleasant working conditions. It is fantastic to see how quickly it’s been adopted in such a short period of time,” Acott said.

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