Planet Forward Web Page for the Glass Recycling videopost by Ms. Mary Frances Stephens, Ole Miss journalism major, May 7, 2013

Sustainable Infrastructure by Recycling Waste Glass to Enhance Road Safety and Reduce Emissions: Guest Post 22

Maintaining Sustainable Infrastructure by Recycling Waste Glass to Enhance Road Safety and Reduce Emissions: video report by a journalism student at the University of Mississippi. Featured on Planet Forward web site.

Guest Post 22 by Ms. Mary Frances Stephens, a journalism major: Faculty adviser Dr. Kristen Swain, assistant professor of journalism at the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss), May 2013.

Ms. Mary Frances Stephens (right), a journalism major at Ole Miss interviewing Dr. Waheed Uddin, Professor of Civil Engineering, May 7, 2013

Ms. Mary Frances Stephens (right), a journalism major at Ole Miss interviewing Dr. Waheed Uddin, Professor of Civil Engineering, May 7, 2013

My video evaluates how can recycling glass help improve our community and its future? This video explains how the recycling/re-use of glass can help improve our safety on the roads in our community as well as reduce the heat island effect that is common in most urban areas. Dr. Waheed Uddin, a professor in the Engineering Department at Ole Miss helps explain what the heat island effect is and how it helps our community.

See more at Planet Forward web site.

Dr. Uddin’s note: Mary Stephens’s video journalism introduces an innovative use of waste glass to maintain sustainable infrastructure. I have written a paper with my PhD student Fahmi for 2013 IJPC international conference in São Paulo, Brazil where we were motivated by Ms. Stephens’s video project. Our recommended approach involves minimal consumption of energy, lower GHG emissions, as well as, reducing “heat-island” effects. Here are some excerpts from this paper based on literature reviews related to opportunities for recycling and reusing waste glass.

  • Glass makes up 7 percent — approximately 12 million ton — of the total weight of U.S. municipal solid waste discarded annually.
  • Approximately 20 percent of this glass is being recycled, primarily for cullet in glass manufacturing.
  • Recycling one ton of glass saves the equivalent in energy of 10 gallons of oil.
  • Over a ton of resources are saved for every ton of glass recycled: 1,330 pounds of sand, 433 pounds of soda ash, 433 pounds of limestone and 151 pounds of feldspar.
  • In other words one ton of recycled glass saves over 200 lbs of CO2 and additional reduction of GHG emissions from not processing over a ton of other raw materials.

The ability to use glass in highway construction depends on the type of collection methods used, costs, and public factors. Many agencies have experimented with glass in highway construction. Much of the current research in this area focuses on the use of glass as an aggregate in asphalt pavements. Pavement technologists’ concerns are the poor bonds with asphalt films around glass aggregates, which may lead to asphalt stripping and early degradation of asphalt layers. But “think outside the box” approach can lead to a great opportunity for reusing waste glass in road markings and markings on parking lots and tennis courts.
Reusing Waste Glass for pavement marking is an innovative approach for incorporating sustainability in pavements and enhancing safety of driving public. This important concept towards sustainability in road infrastructure relies on the reuse of non-pavement waste materials after required processing and minimizing the use of raw materials.
Further research is needed to use fine particles of crushed waste glass for partial replacement of sand content in asphalt and concrete pavements, which will enhance pavement reflective thermal properties and reduce heat-island effects. This “think outside the box” conservation concept of the recycle and reuse of glass contributes towards lower energy consumption, CO2 and other GHG reduction, a greener earth, and better community.

 

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