When it’s time to build or restore a driveway, many homeowners want a paving material that does as little damage to the earth as possible. Is asphalt a “green” substance? Our experts at J&W Asphalt are here with answers to all of your questions about asphalt and the environment.
Is Asphalt Environmentally Friendly?
Surprisingly, yes! Asphalt, as a petroleum-based product, might not strike you as the most ecologically sound material to use for a driveway, but the industry has made several improvements over the past few decades.
According to the National Asphalt Paving Association (NAPA), asphalt is a liquid mix of asphalt binder (also called asphalt cement) crushed rock, gravel, and sand (collectively called aggregates) to make pavement. Asphalt binder, the glue that binds the aggregates together, is derived from petroleum.
Here a few reasons why asphalt is an ecologically sound solution for driveways:
1. Greener Manufacturing
Asphalt producers reduced their greenhouse gas emissions 97% from 1970-1999. In addition, a 2005 study found it takes 20% less energy to produce asphalt than concrete. The Environmental Protection Agency considers asphalt production a minor source of pollution.
2. Asphalt Is Recyclable
Much of the asphalt in use today is made from asphalt that’s already been used. Companies like J&W Asphalt reclaim the old asphalt from driveways and parking lots and take it to plants where it is reheated and remixed.
● Asphalt binder recycled from old pavements and roofing shingles replaces more than 21 million barrels of oil per year, lowering the depletion of natural resources.
● Recycled asphalt paving may also include recycled glass, used tires and blast furnace slag.
● According to NAPA, the U.S. reclaims more than 80 million tons of asphalt every year; 99% of it is reused.
3. It’s Waterproof
One of the nice things about an asphalt driveway is that it just naturally sheds water. And chemicals won’t leach out of it. That’s why it’s often used to line the bottoms of fish hatcheries and drinking water reservoirs.
As you can see, an asphalt driveway is environmentally friendly! When all these factors are considered, asphalt driveways are more eco-conscious than other pavement types.
Contact J&W for Twin Cities Asphalt Solutions
If you’re looking into new driveway construction, it’s important to hire the very best in the industry. J&W Asphalt is a family-owned business with more than four decades of experience. We install high-quality asphalt surfaces for residential housing and commercial projects and work with some of the best and largest residential builders in the Twin Cities metro area.
To request a free quote online or schedule your next project, give us a call at 952-894-9078, or contact us at email@example.com.