Is recycling a solution to the infrastructure conundrum?

July 11, 2018


In this month’s Quarry Magazine, editor Damian Christie questions whether recycling could be the answer to the burgeoning resource shortage that’s set to drive up the cost of Australia’s biggest infrastructure boom.

Green Roads, by Alex Fraser is the country’s leading recycler and provider of sustainable construction materials. With a network of sites across Victoria and Queensland, Alex Fraser has provided more than 45 million tonnes of quality construction material to Australia’s leading developers who’ve built many of the freeways, roads and ports we rely on.

Alex Fraser MD Peter Murphy assures that recycling could very well be the most economical, practical and sustainable solution to the resource shortage.

“As extractive resources diminish and new sources move further afield the costs associated with procurement of virgin materials increase; not to mention the environmental and community impacts like increased traffic and emissions.

“To build the new infrastructure our communities need, we first have to demolish the old. The Level Crossing Removal Authority projects are a great example of this. This valuable waste stream either goes to landfill or a recycler. When C&D recyclers are well placed, close to the source (demolitions) and the new projects, recycling becomes easy, and it works; but only where governments support it’s use.

“While we agree that governments need to do more to promote recycling; increased recycling alone won’t get Australia through this crisis,” Peter said.

Quality recycled products are proven to hold up against virgin material, and in many cases they can even outperform their quarried counterparts. However, in too many areas, impediments to the use of recycled material exist.

“We need governments to actively support the procurement of recycled material for new infrastructure through the development of clear and supportive specifications and an effort to educate decision makers on the value, quality and benefits of choosing recycled.

“Victoria is leading the way in the uptake of recycled materials with VicRoads and many municipalities clearly allowing for the use of sustainable products in their specification.

“The quicker we can get other specifiers, governments and industry leaders to make the switch to sustainable products, the quicker we’ll all benefit from the significant savings,” he said

To read Damian Christie’s editorial in the July edition of Quarry Magazine, click here.

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