What’s the easiest way to achieve sustainability on new infrastructure projects?
March 29, 2018
Australia’s infrastructure boom shows no signs of curbing, with experts predicting a national spend of $16 billion per year, for the next three years on major transport infrastructure projects alone. And that only accounts for the really large projects, such as the Level Crossing Removal, Bruce Highway Upgrade, Ipswich Motorway and Melbourne Metro projects; then there’s an additional $36 billion to be spent by 2020 on the smaller infrastructure construction projects.
While all this construction comes at great cost, the economic gains are far greater. However, nothing can outweigh the potential environmental costs of such a massive spike in development. When we’re building cities on a planet already stressed by climate change and the depletion of natural resources, there’s no ifs or buts about it – new infrastructure must be sustainable.
What is Infrastructure Sustainability?
Infrastructure Sustainability: Infrastructure designed, constructed and operated to optimise environmental, social and economic outcomes of the long term.
– Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia (ISCA)
More than ever before, government and developers are aware of the environmental impact of development. Thankfully, the tide is turning for infrastructure sustainability with many major projects striving to achieve sustainability under the Infrastructure Sustainability (IS) Rating Scheme – an industry developed, owned and operated rating system. Based on industry best practice, the IS rating tool evaluates sustainability initiatives against the potential environmental, social and economic impacts of infrastructure projects.
ISCA recognises projects achieve sustainable outcomes through the combined input, effort and drive from multiple stakeholders across project planning, design, construction and operation phases.
As current members of Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia, Green Roads by Alex Fraser can guide project engineers to choose the best recycled products to meet specifications and help achieve IS rating.
How can recycled materials help achieve infrastructure sustainability?
Alex Fraser has supplied several major infrastructure projects which have gone on to achieve excellent Infrastructure Sustainability ratings, including:
- Citylink Tulla Widening (IS design rating of excellence),
- Gateway Upgrade North (IS design rating of excellence; and
- Webb Dock West (IS as-built rating of excellence)
Our range of Green Roads recycled construction materials include aggregates, asphalt, road base and sand. All of which have been recognised for their sustainability offerings by organisations such as Sustainability Victoria and EcoRecycle Victoria. Our materials are recognised for their quality and are manufactured to road authority specifications: VicRoads (section 812, 815 and 407) and Queensland’s Department of Main Roads and Transport (Queensland Main Roads Spec MRTS35).
Green Roads recycled construction materials contribute to achieving project sustainability through:
- Density savings – recycled road base is lighter than virgin material. This means you cover more ground with fewer tonnes, attracting a 10% saving on product costs as well as transport costs (and with reduced truck movements).
- Reliable supply – our high volume plants in and around metropolitan Melbourne and Brisbane produce quality materials at the rate of 500 tonnes per hour. Our cutting-edge transport fleet is focused on on-time delivery direct to your site.
- Quality assurance – our products are vigorously tested in NATA laboratories to ensure they consistently meet the highest standard. They have also undergone an independent Life Cycle Assessment conducted by RMIT University.
- Environmental savings, four ways – when you choose to use a Green Roads product over virgin materials you effectively reduce:
- 1) the carbon footprint of your project by 65%,
- 2) the extraction of non-renewable resources,
- 3) landfill of construction and demolition waste; and
- 4) truck traffic required to transport these lighter materials.
We’re passionate about transforming the way communities, governments and developers plan and build new infrastructure.
Our focus remains on ensuring our customers experience excellence in service, delivery reliability, quality and environmental outcomes.
If you’re ready to make a change to achieve better sustainability outcomes on your next project, get in touch today to discuss how we can make your materials selection work for you.
Check out our savings calculator, to estimate the potential cost and carbon savings you could make on your next job, simply by choosing to go green.