AS PART of the plastic waste management scheme, the government has been mulling on various steps with which one can use plastic waste constructively. Taking the initiative forward, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), which had earlier initiated the project on a small scale, has now decided to use maximum plastic waste for road construction in the city.
“We want a professional agency that would ensure effective reuse of plastic waste that is generated in the city. The PMC wants to use plastic waste for road construction on a large scale,” said Suresh Jagtap, joint municipal commissioner.
He said the civic administration had earlier got a clearance on the use of plastic in road construction from the technical committee. “The initiative will be launched on a large scale and hence, it is neccessary that a dedicated agency is allotted for collecting and segregating the plastic waste, cleaning it, processing it for road construction material,” Jagtap said, adding the plastic waste could be used as bitumen or for fuel generation.
A total of 1,600 tonne of solid waste is generated every day in the PMC jurisdiction and half of it is wet organic waste while the rest is dry and recyclable. Of the total recyclable waste, five per cent is made up of various types of plastic. “The use of plastic waste on a large scale would be a big relief to the PMC as its a serious issue to dispose off the plastic waste,” he said. The PMC has also undertaken a campaign to make the city free of plastic bags by encouraging use of cloth or paper bag. The PMC owns a hot mix plant for use of asphalt in road construction and it is operated by the civic road department, he said, adding, the collected plastic waste would be handed over at the plant. The civic body can provide land or basic infrastructure to set up the plant, he said.
Meanwhile, the Road department civic officer said the use of plastic in road construction is possible if they get cleaned beforehand. “We will not be able to use unclean plastic as it would affect the road material,” he said, adding, “It has been observed that the use of plastic in road construction increases strength of road and checks the damage during monsoon and winter.”