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Adopt Innovations for Green Environ

By Bhushan Parimoo

Solving problem is essential to engineering as said and rightly expected. Makes Engineers to be on the lookout constantly for a better way to do things for the betterment of the society. Engineers of the State are second to no one any field of Engineering .

 

Yet strangely enough in the field of Environment Justice to keeps the environment clean and fresh around there is nothing laudable to write home about them. On one hand rapid urbanisation, together with consumerization has brought in tremendous unsustainable pressure on the natural resources both renewable and non-renewable due to reckless exploitation far over its carrying capacity of the resources are available on this planet. On the other hand produces enormous amount of wastes which comes in way to save the Earth for clean environ.

A rough tentative estimate reveals that the State of Jammu and Kashmir generates about 1.5 million tonnes of solid waste annually, which one finds daily littered here and there all over some of it a meagre part is transported to pit fill sites that too in most unhygienic manner. Mounds of garbage are a common sight today. Waste thrown is omnipresent in the form of rotting piles that dot our landscape, foul our rivers and pollute our wells and lakes. Even trash has overcome the rural-urban divide very successfully.

It is here that call of responsibility towards society rests on the shoulders of the Engineers in the State, to rise to the occasion which polluted scenario demands, develop and inculcate innovative culture to contain solid waste to zero tolerance level. It has been observed with anguish that Engineers here by and large are abjuring Innovative Technology. To keep pace with latest trends for giving enough space in its working for green environ.

The UNSD Glossary of Environment Statistics describes waste as “materials that are not prime products (that is, products produced for the market) for which the generator has no further use in terms of his/her own purposes of production, transformation or consumption, and of which he/she wants to dispose. Wastes may be generated during the extraction of raw materials, the processing of raw materials into intermediate and final products, the consumption of final products, and other human activities.

The European Union defines waste as “an object the holder discards, intends to discard or is required to discard. Need of the hour is to tackle Solid waste pollution the cause main cause through urbanization and through industrial waste. Various diseases in human as bacillary dysentery, diarrhoea and amoebic dysentery, plague, salmonellosis, trichinosis, endemic typhus, cholera, jaundice, hepatitis, gastro enteric diseases etc.

Every Municipality, Town area Committees, even in the Blocks, there are Engineers to supervise the disposal of waste under Sawach Bharat. National Green Tribunal has already issued warning that failure to implementation of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016. Ensure proper management of solid waste will have disastrous consequences, the tribunal has appointed three committees to monitor disposal of garbage in an eco-friendly manner across the country .

And sought compliance. It is a right time before heavy fines are imposed by the Tribunal, which it has already started. Authorities should draw up an action plan for environ safe, conduct orientation programme at site and its implementation? Plastic is one of the worrying problem which has slowly but steadily become an integral part of all human requirements.

Plastic carry bags, packaging material, bottles, cups, and various other items have slowly replaced everything made of other material due to the advantages of plastic. Plastic is durable, easy to produce, lightweight, unbreakable, odourless, and chemical resistant. Since it does not decompose, remains as it for centuries to emit pollution has become a major source of worry among the solid waste Plastic waste clogs drains, causing floods.

It chokes animals that eat plastic bags, etc. Plastics found in fields blocks germination and prevent rainwater absorption. While some governments have tried banning certain types of plastic, there is still no wishing away all forms of it. Here it is from where the Engineers show it acumen of innovation. The implementation of plastics in roads opens a new option for recycling post-consumer plastics. Benefits derived at are use higher percentage of plastic waste .

The plastics involved in building these roads consists mainly of common post-consumer products such as product packaging. Some of the most common plastics used in packaging are polyethylene terephthalate (PET or PETE), polyvinylchloride (PVC), polypropylene (PP), and high and low density polyethylene (HDPE and LDPE Increase the strength and performance of the road pavement. Avoid disposal of plastic waste by incineration and land filling Add value to plastic waste.

Generate jobs for rag pickers. These roads are made from recycled plastics, and the first step in constructing them is to collect and manage the plastic material. These materials are first sorted from plastic waste. After sorting, the material is cleaned, dried, and shredded.

The shredded plastic is mixed and melted at around 170°C. Hot bitumen is then added and mixed with the melted plastic. After mixing the mixture is laid as one would with regular asphalt concrete. It can be used in Surface courses, base courses, sub base courses and Road pavement structures. Plastic roads are made entirely of plastic or of composite of plastic with other materials. Australia, Indonesia, United States and many other countries have used technology which can incorporate plastic waste into an asphalt mix.

Plastic roads are different from standard roads in the respect that standard roads are made from asphalt concrete, which consists of mineral aggregates and asphalt. Plastic composite roads, have existed and demonstrate characteristics superior to regular asphalt concrete roads; specifically, they show better wear resistance. Construction can be significantly more efficient, since roads can be created as individual pieces, which can be switched out in case of damage.

This is different from traditional ways of road repair, which requires large amounts of time on site shaping asphalt to the desired shape. On September 13, 2018, the Dutch company Volkerwessels built a bicycle path made of recycled plastic in Zwolle, in the North-east part of the Netherlands. According to the Guardian, “A second path is to be installed in Giethoorn in Overijssel, and Rotterdam is the city most likely to take up the technology .Roads can also be made with regular asphalt concrete mixed with rubber crumbs obtained from recycled rubber tyres. The city of Phoenix, Arizona was the first to use rubber roads in 1960s.

These roads are very durable due to high elasticity of rubber. Thus roads last longer. Additionally, these roads reduce road noise. After about one year it was determined that asphalt rubber overlays resulted in up to 12 decibels of in road noise reduction, with a typical reduction of 7 to 9 decibels. Also, they improve traction of the road surface.

Recycled plastic is used for roof tiles. Roads with plastic bitumen mix were tried and successfully laid in 2006 by Rajagopalan Vasudevan, a professor in Thiagarajar College of Engineering who has worked mainly in waste management.

He developed an innovative method to reuse plastic waste to construct better, more durable and very cost-effective roads. “When using plastic as a binder, we’re reducing the quantity of bitumen that is normally utilized for road laying by 6-8%,” says Dr Vasudevan. A regular road requires 10 tonnes of bitumen for each kilometre.

A plastic road however, requires only nine tonnes of bitumen and one tonne of waste plastic for coating. So, for every km, the plastic roads save as much as one tonne of bitumen.

When late Dr Abdul Kalam, India’s former president and scientist visited Thiagarajar College, he encouraged Dr Vasudevan to lay the first plastic paved road within the campus. “He asked me to make the roads grey, since black roads absorb and trap heat,” says Dr Vasudevan. In 2002, he paved a 60-ft road within the campus with plastic-modified bitumen. The road is still intact today.

He received a patent for the process in 2006. Since then, almost 10,000km of Indian roads have been paved using his technique. Another heartening news is worth to make mention here that a Bengaluru-based initiative now has a solution that can utilise discarded plastic to make it use as colourful tiles. One tile can be manufactured out of around 15 disposable food containers, 150 polythene bags, around 30 shampoo bottles or 150 disposable spoons, he said. Testing is being done to see where it can be used and what different designs can be made. Wall cladding is also being readied.

We are looking at the artistic aspect as well. Only homogeneous material has been used in these tiles, unlike in other similar tiles in which fly ash, sand, and other things are mixed. This makes it recyclable. The makers are trying to price it to compete with cement blocks, at around ?70 to ?90 per square feet, depending on load bearing capacity, quality, colour and design. Besides it Engineers here can revert back to mud mortar, mud plaster to take off pressure of natural mineral to some extent and is reusable too.

(The author is a Jammu based environmentalist)