The UK has set ambitious targets to become net zero carbon by the year 2050.
Proposals to road infrastructure have been mooted in order to eliminate the majority of the carbon dioxide emissions from road freight.
The installation of overhead charging cables for electric lorries on e-Highways across the country has been widely discussed over the summer.
However, it isn’t just changes to road infrastructure that will help Britain become carbon neutral. In January of this year, Birmingham announced a plan to ban private cars from the city centre. The move is designed to tackle air pollution and prioritise cycling, walking and public transport.
Other English cities are also introducing measures to improve air quality, with Oxford announcing that drivers would be charged at least £10 to enter the city centre under plans for a “zero-emission zone”.
Only electric, hybrid or hydrogen cars would be exempt. Further to this, York became the first city looking to ban all private cars from its city centre within three years.
As major British cities seek to place a greater emphasis on cycling as the dominant mode of transport in urbanised centres, Roadmender Asphalt, a Sheffield-based road repair business, and have started trials for their Elastomac material with councils across the country, looking to make road surfaces more conducive to cycling safety.
These new pothole repair solutions also happen to be more environmentally friendly. Elastomac, for example, is a novel thermoplastic material that contains seven end of life lorry tyres recycled into every tonne of its composite.
Harry Pearl, CEO of Roadmender Asphalt, has offered insight into materials produced, such as Elastomac, that are making groundbreaking strides towards helping Britain’s roads the most sustainable.
“After a decade of austerity, councils have naturally gravitated towards innovation and have helped launch R&D hubs, working with innovative SMEs, to pull together and find innovative techniques for repairing key infrastructure in the UK, such as our extensive road networks.
“Together, SMEs and councils have started to ask why trench repairs filled with the same materials made to build roads, when they can fill potholes with materials made specifically for the job, that may prove to be significantly more efficient and cost-effective.
“At Roadmender Asphalt we are developing new products that will continue to be trialled with councils post-lockdown. Rather than having to spend time square cutting and excavating trenches before filling them with glue covered aggregate that takes hours to collect, has a 5 hour shelf life and then requires vibratory compaction; trenches can now be filled with a purpose designed flowable repair material that’s made from sustainable recycled materials, is heated on site, welds itself to the existing road and delivers a totally waterproof permanent repair.
“By avoiding excavating the patch the process requires on average 80% less material with no waste to carry away meaning contractors are able to complete 5 times more patches per day at significantly reduced cost.”