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Recycled Bitumen Aid Environmental Protection in Beijing
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Bituminous-paving has commenced on the secondary roads that lead off Beijing's Second Ring Road. Unlike the ring road itself, these subsidiaries are now being paved with a revolutionary new type of bitumen. This debut use of the new material results from an environmental protection project associated with the bid Beijing's 2008 Olympic Games. What makes this material special is that it has been recycled.

The extensive use now planned for the recycled bitumen should contribute to environmental protection in the city, produce energy savings and of course provide very necessary paving materials. Recycled bituminous-paving is indistinguishable in appearance from the original product and paving procedures are identical.

"Some 100,000 tons of broken-out bituminous-paving are removed from Beijing each year," said an official from the Beijing Luxin Bituminous Concrete Co. Ltd. "The waste used to be disposed of as land-fill at a cost to the municipal government of 3 million yuan (US$0.36 million) a year. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousand of tons of bitumen are imported each year."

With accelerated development of municipal infrastructures, the amount of bitumen used has increased dramatically. The Luxin Company, with the support of the municipal government, has invested in importing advanced equipment.

Extensive research was first carried out on reclaimed bitumen. This involved crushing and grading the material, heating and adding controlled proportions of fresh materials.

Then last year, trials using recycled bitumen proved to be a success in Yangfangdian in Beijing. An evaluation conducted by the Municipal Construction Committee showed that the recycled bitumen satisfied all the required technical parameters.

The municipal government has already banned the dumping of waste bituminous products and construction units are now required to remove these materials to designated recycling plants.

(China.org.cn by Zhang Tingting, July 12, 2002)

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