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Why Is Asphalt Recycling Important?

Key Takeaways:

  1. Asphalt recycling is the process of milling, or reusing, a damaged pavement surface to restore a road’s structural integrity.
  2. It has become increasingly popular due to its environmental benefits and cost savings. It can reduce the production of CO2 by a significant amount compared to creating new asphalt from scratch.
  3. A huge benefit of recycled asphalt is that it reduces the need for virgin materials, saves energy, reduces emissions, creates jobs, and is good for the environment and economy.
  4. The process involves breaking down asphalt into small pieces and heating it to create a new mixture.

Have you ever thought about where the asphalt on your street comes from? Or where the asphalt in your driveway was once located? Chances are, it was recycled.

Asphalt recycling is crucial to ensuring that resources are used efficiently and helps reduce environmental impacts. In the USA, asphalt has been recycled more than any other material in the past 20 years.

So, what is this recycling, and why is it so important? Let’s take a closer look.

What Is The Process And How Does It Work?

It is the process of milling or reusing a damaged asphalt pavement surface. The goal is to restore the structural integrity of a road by replacing the required material layers and reinforcing the existing road foundation.

In practice, asphalt recycling begins with milling—or digging out—the existing asphalt layer before replacing it with a new mix. The appearance of the recycled material will vary depending on how much of the original paving material was reclaimed & reused. During this process, you can add additional material to strengthen or reinforce areas that may be damaged or deficient.

Over time recycled asphalt has become an increasingly popular way of re-establishing roads without starting from scratch. Not only does it help reduce waste materials going into landfills but it provides superior performance to the newly-laid hot mix in terms of water infiltration resistance and heavy traffic load support.

It paves the way for efficient roadway construction and rehabilitation — saving time and money while providing sustainable solutions for our roads.

The Benefits Of Recycling Asphalt

Each year, more than 100 million tons of asphalt pavement is reclaimed from roads and parking lots across the United States.

It is not only good for the environment but also provides many economic and social benefits:

Recycled Asphalt Reduces The Need For Virgin Materials

Recycling asphalt pavement reduces the need to mine, process, and transport virgin materials. This reduces the environmental impact of producing new asphalt pavement.

It Saves Energy

The production of new asphalt requires a significant amount of energy. Recycling helps to conserve energy by using less energy to produce new pavement.

It Reduces Emissions

The production of new asphalt also results in the emission of greenhouse gases. It helps to reduce emissions by using less energy to produce new pavement.

It Saves Money

It often costs less than the production of new asphalt pavement. You can use these savings to fund other projects or programs within a community.

It Creates Jobs

The recycling of asphalt pavement creates jobs in the construction and transportation industries. These jobs cannot be outsourced and help to support the local economy.

It’s Good for The Environment

Asphalt recycling helps to conserve resources, reduce emissions, and save energy. This makes it good for the environment.

It’s Good for The Economy

It creates jobs and saves money, making it good for the economy.

How To Recycle Asphalt?

  • Asphalt recycling is the process of reclaiming asphalt pavement that has been removed from a road or parking lot and recycling it for use in new asphalt pavement. It’s removed using an excavator or bulldozer.
  • Recycling is done on-site, where the asphalt was removed from. A mobile plant can be set up at the site and used to recycle the asphalt on-site, eliminating the need for transportation to a separate off-site facility.
  • Recycling asphalt involves breaking it down into small pieces and heating it to create a new mixture. This process can be done with either hot or cold asphalt, depending on the type of application.
  • Once the asphalt has been heated, additional materials such as aggregate and binders are added to create a new pavement mix that can be used in place of traditional asphalt materials. This recycled mixture is typically up to 95% as strong as a brand-new road surface.
  • It can be used in various applications, including driveways, pathways, parking lots, and even roads.

Related: Asphalt Paving Equipment

The Future Of Asphalt Recycling

Recycled asphalt is becoming increasingly popular due to its environmental benefits and cost savings. It can reduce the production of CO2 by a significant amount compared to creating new asphalt from scratch.

Additionally, using it also reduces the need for mining virgin materials – meaning fewer resources are used in the process, which is beneficial for the environment.

It is an efficient and sustainable way to reduce construction costs, as recycled asphalt can cost up to 20% less than new asphalt.

As technology advances and resources become limited, asphalt recycling will become even more important in paving projects worldwide. It will be key to helping the environment, reducing costs, and conserving resources.


Asphalt recycling is important for reducing construction costs, conserving resources, and helping the environment. It is a sustainable way to reduce the need for mining virgin materials and can provide significant cost savings compared to new asphalt. With technological advances, this practice will become even more mainstream in paving global projects. It makes sense economically and environmentally, and its importance will undoubtedly continue to increase.

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