A section of road in Sargvere, Järva County is being resurfaced with asphalt which includes plastic waste. The kinds of plastic granules need for production are not produced in Estonia yet this may change in future if demand increases.
Five tonnes of plastic pellets are needed for the two-meter long section of Sargere road. The same amount of plastic which would produce 410,000 plastic bottles.
From the outside, the asphalt with plastic looks like regular asphalt although some pellets from the crushing of industrial plastic waste have been added to the bitumen, ETV current affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported.
The plastic pellets are not yet produced in Estonia but the company, MacRebur Ltd, hopes this could happen in the future.
MacRebur Ltd's Baltic representative Velvo Vaht said: "The production process demands us to replace about 5 percent of the bitumen with pellet or plastic waste in road construction. Currently, it comes from the U.K for this test section. But of course, our longer goal is for Estonia, and across the Baltics, to have local pellets. It requires volume and capacity to produce it and achieving it is possible in the Baltic region."
As this is a test section, the Road Administrations will start to keep an eye on how the asphalt is holding on in Estonia's conditions.
Head of the Eastern Road Maintenance Department of the Road Administration, Anti Palmi said: "We plan to measure the grip factor, the rut, load capacity - all main factors, which describe the durability of the road."
In October, Estonia's first piece of asphalt made from plastic was laid in Tallinn. A trial section 75 meters long and 3 meters wide was laid on the sidewalk in front of the Chinese Embassy, as part of the Reidi Road development. It was the first of its kind in Northern and Eastern Europe.
Editor: Roberta Vaino