Sunday 29th Mar, 2020

Victorian rail projects to see recycled material boom

A new initiative from the Victorian government is set to boost the use of recycled material in rail and infrastructure projects.

A new initiative from the Victorian government is set to boost the use of recycled material in rail and infrastructure projects.

According to Transport Infrastructure Minister Jacinta Allan, Recycled First brings a uniform approach to the existing ‘ad hoc’ use of recycled products on major infrastructure projects.

The program will incorporate recycled and reused materials that meet existing standards for road and rail projects – with recycled aggregates, glass, plastic, timber, steel, ballast, crushed concrete, crushed brick, crumb rubber, reclaimed asphalt pavement and organics taking precedence over brand new materials.

“We’re paving a greener future for Victoria’s infrastructure, turning waste into vital materials for our huge transport agenda and getting rubbish out of landfills,” Allan said.

Recycled First will boost the demand for reused materials right across our construction sector – driving innovation in sustainable materials and changing the way we think about waste products.”

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“Companies interested in delivering major transport infrastructure projects will be required to demonstrate how they will prioritise recycled and reused materials, while maintaining compliance and quality standards,” Allan said.

In addition, contractors will need to report on the types and volumes of recycled products used.

The policy will not set mandatory minimum requirements or targets, Allan said. Instead, a project-by-project approach will allow contractors to liaise with recycled materials suppliers to determine if there are adequate supplies of the necessary products for their project.

“Work is already underway with current construction partners to ensure more recycled content is being used on major projects, in addition to the new Recycled First requirements,” Allan said.

According to Allan, recycled demolition material was also used to build extra lanes along 24 kilometres of the Tullamarine Freeway, as well as the Monash Freeway and M80 Ring Road.

“The state government is also reusing materials created by its own projects, with 14,000 tonnes of soil excavated from the Metro Tunnel site in Parkville now being used in pavement layers on roads in Point Cook,” she said.

“This material weighs as much as 226 E-class Melbourne trams and would otherwise have gone to landfill.”