Tyres that once drove over roads will be used to make roads in a trial by Latrobe City Council.
Council will use crumb rubber made from recycled tyres to construct road surfaces at Morwell and Moe in April.
“Latrobe City Council strives to provide services to our community as sustainably as possible and this trial is another example of how we are doing that,” Latrobe City Council Mayor, Cr Sharon Gibson said.
“We hope this trial proves successful and that we can extend the use of crumb rubber into other roads projects as well, further reducing the number of tyres going to waste.”
The crumb rubber will be melted into the bitumen binder, and along with coarse and fine stones, is part of the asphalt mix. The rubber comprises approximately 1.5 per cent of the overall mix. So, a roadwork project using 200 tonnes of asphalt would use three tonnes of tyres.
The tyres were sourced from one of two accredited tyre recyclers in Melbourne. Accreditation is managed by Tyre Stewardship Australia, who are charged with developing markets for end-of-life tyres.
According to Sustainability Victoria, approximately 50 million vehicle tyres reach end-of-life across Australia each year.
Only 16% of these are now being recycled locally, yet each passenger car tyre contains approximately 7kg of rubber, 1.5kg of steel and 0.5kg of textiles.
A large proportion of old tyres are shipped overseas while the rest are sent to landfill, stockpiled or illegally dumped.
The roadworks will be undertaken at Langford Street, Morwell, and Drew and Short streets, Moe.
The sites were selected as they are lower traffic roads and easier to complete as the weather cools, as traditional asphalt laying requires warmer weather.
The Morwell works will be undertaken by Gippsland Asphalt on Tuesday, 6 April.
The Moe works will be done on Thursday, April 22.
In another example of innovation, Council will use recycled glass in an asphalt mix during roadworks at Traralgon later this year.