Coimbatore's Kurudampalayam village panchayat known for meticulously turning trash into treasure has taken the next step forward by using plastic collected in the village to lay roads.
The village panchayat successfully laid a 200-meter road at Priyanka Nagar near Palanigoundanpudur with ground waste plastic mixed in it on a trial basis with the help of a private waste management firm and experts. Villagers said it is the first such project successfully executed in the district.
There are nine villages and over 13000 families under this panchayat. The local body gathers 10 tons of waste per day and the dry plastic waste alone accumulates approximately 4000 kg per day on average.
D Ravi president of the village panchayat said the village panchayat took several initiatives in waste segregation in the last eight years and numerous effectively are in process. For the past five months, the village has been focusing on source segregation and recycling. As part of it, this plastic road model has been adopted. After discussing various plans, the road project was adopted as it gives a double advantage.
The source segregation was done in full swing by Planet Huggs, which allocated 43 pushcarts to gather the segregated waste from households in 15 wards. They have divided the wards into four clusters - three cover residential areas and one covers commercial sites.
One of the firm directors C Prashanth said that after dividing biodegradable and napkin waste dry plastic waste was taken for recycling. The firm handles 35 varieties of plastic waste usually and one of them is Multi-Layered Packaging (MLP) generally used for road works that can't be recycled efficiently. A huge quantity of such waste can be gathered as most food packages come with these plastic surfaces.
Prashanth told the media that a plastic tar road has double strength when compared to an ordinary bitumen road. It can resist both heavy loads and heavy traffic and it is not impacted by rain or stagnated water.
The road life is not less than seven years and there is no requirement for maintenance expenditure. When mixing with the bitumen around 180 kg of plastic waste was used to lay a 200-meter road. Experts from Thiagarajar College of Engineering in Madurai directed the village panchayat. Further, it will be a better choice to handle the plastic waste Prashanth said.