Asphalt’s near universal use as a paving material and its shorter life cycle make it one of America’s most recycled materials. Existing asphalt pavement is reclaimed and reused to produce new roads. In addition to reusing the aggregate, the asphalt cement binder is reactivated and reused as well. Some recycled pavement mixes also incorporate old asphalt roofing shingles and tires. Such practices conserve natural resources, reduce the carbon footprint of road building and save landfill space.
A number of innovative asphalt products are emerging to meeting evolving needs. One such new material is epoxy asphalt, which offers greater durability than conventional asphalt for use on bridge decks and other high performance applications. Pervious asphalt allows water to pass though it rather than run off of it, reducing the need for drainage systems and retention ponds. And thin asphalt overlays are an option for renewing both asphalt and concrete roads in need of resurfacing or reconstruction.