Himachal flirts with plastic roads

The Himachal Pradesh government has come up with a novel way of paving roads using plastic waste.A target of constructing 150 km long stretch of plastic roads has been set during the current fiscal year.

“All divisions of the PWD are using plastic for roads. This year the PWD will build 150 km of roads surfaced with plastic waste.Last year 42 km of roads were built using this material,” said the state’s PWD minister Gulab Singh here Tuesday.

“We are able to make use of this non-bio degradable waste which otherwise pollutes the environment.These roads are also far stronger and last longer, besides being cheaper than bitumen,” said Singh.

“The state government has so far collected 104 tonnes of plastic all over the state.We have already used 40 tonnes of this waste to construct roads,” the PWD minister said.

The plastic waste is shredded by a simple machine and then heated upto 160 C after which it is used to pave roads.

“Some states have asked for our help and want to make plastic waste roads as well,” Singh said.
Himachal Pradesh is one of the first states in the country to ban the use of polythene.From August 15 it will also ban the use of disposable plastic plates and cups.

In a 20 year career published widely. He has worked for the BBC, AFP, The Statesman, IANS and the Business Standard . Known for his hard hitting writing and occasional off-beat stories. He lives in Shimla.

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