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Plastic Roads – Is Plastic Enemy or Friend?

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Plastic Roads

We keep on hearing the hazardous effects of plastic pollution around the world. With the convenience and easy availability of plastic products and packages, it has slowly become a part of our lives and has made a permanent place in our households. Until and unless very strict rules are made barring plastic use, it will be very difficult to stop plastic pollution everywhere. Till that is done, many organizations are trying to come up with innovative ideas to use plastic in a useful way. We have already discussed how plastic bottles are being converted into plastic bottle houses and plastic green walls.

Did you about the plastic man in India who paves roads out of waste plastic? Did you know there exists a government ruling in India which has made it compulsory to use plastic waste in road construction in India?

Plastic Man of India

Prof Rajagopalan Vasudevan, Professor of Chemistry at Thiagarajar College of Engineering, Madurai is popularly known as the Plastic Man of India. He used plastic waste on a road constructed inside the premises of his college in 2002. The plastic waste like wrappers and packages are shredded into a particular size then heated at a particular temperature and mixed with the bitumen. This mix is used for road construction. During the entire process, there is hardly any toxic emission. These roads are also stronger as the tensile strength improves along with the bitumen and can resist strong rains and cold weather. Plastic also prevents pothole formation. Prof Vasudevan has also invented making stones with plastic waste (plastones), which can be conveniently used for outdoor flooring and as construction tiles.

Plastic road

So we see that plastic is not the problem, but the way in which we dispose it carelessly is ruining the environment. If care is taken to properly direct the plastic waste for the desired use, thereafter, plastic waste could actually prove to be useful. The road which was constructed more than a decade ago still stands strong and more than 10,000 km long roads have been constructed using the same technology in India.

There are various DIY methods designed to use plastic waste in more intelligent ways. So what is your idea of curbing plastic waste? Send us your entry in the form of comments at the end of this post and we will publish your story for the world to read.


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

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