The novel idea is a result of Waterford County Council's extention of the county's network of bottle banks and the introduction of a scheme for collecting glass from hotels and pubs.With glass having been used successfully in road construction projects in Britain, the Council entered into discussion with two companies, Roadstone and Sam Shire, with a view to using crushed glass in road base macadam.According to Frank Curran, Senior Engineer, Waterford County Council, approximately 30 tonnes of glass is being collected each month on behalf of the local authority.
He says is vital to the success of the recycling scheme that reliable markets for the collected glass can be found. The macadam, which contains about 10% recycled glass, can be used on smaller roads and as an under layer in higher quality roads
Some of those who worked on laying the new road surface at Cockpit Lane in Tallow, Co Waterford said the mixture looked just the same as conventional macadam and that there would be no way of knowing there was glass in the mix.
According to Mr Finbarr Buckley, Contracts Manager, Roadstone Provinces Ltd, approximately 25,000 tonnes of macadam are used in Co Waterford each year. He says that if the new macadam performs as well as anticipated, there is no reason why recycled glass could not be used in every batch.