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Dow incorporates recycled plastic into Michigan roads and parking lots

Dow launches second North American pilot to advance the circular economy with the incorporation of recycled plastic into asphalt for roads and parking lots.

As part of Dow’s circular economy efforts, the company is working with several industry associates to use recycled plastic in modified asphalt to pave four roads in Midland County, as well as parking lots at the Global Dow Center in Midland and at Saginaw Valley State University. This is the second phase of Dow’s recycled plastic road pilots in North America, following the successful construction of two roads at the company’s Freeport, Texas facility. The pilot project’s goal is to help develop new end-use markets that maintain the value of recycled plastics. Enabled by Dow ELVALOY™ asphalt modification technology, these projects achieve the following:

  • Use more than 10,400 lbs. of recycled plastics, equivalent in weight to more than 769,500 plastic grocery bags.
  • Cover 5.5 lane miles of asphalt roads and 30,500 square yards of parking surface.
  • When combined with the Freeport, Texas pilot earlier this year, Dow’s recycled plastic road projects in North America have incorporated more than 12,086 lbs. of plastic, equivalent in weight to approximately 889,500 plastic grocery bags.

“As we work towards our 2025 Sustainability Goals, we’re harnessing the power of innovation and collaboration to help build a plastics circular economy that retains the value of plastics while working to minimize plastic waste in the environment,” said Julie Zaniewski, Dow’s North American sustainability director for Packaging & Specialty Plastics. “We’re excited to see this pilot demonstrate the viability of ELVALOY technology and recycled plastics modified asphalt for potential use in U.S. public roads.”

“The preliminary performance results of our asphalt road projects containing recycled plastics, have been promising, and we’ll continue exploring collaborations to advance recycled plastic modified asphalt roads as a viable end market for used plastics,” said Nishant Karamchandani, Dow’s North American Packaging & Specialty Plastics infrastructure marketing manager. “It’s a strategic way we can use our business to help advance the circular economy.”

Dow researchers will continue to analyze the results of these pilot projects by monitoring the longevity and performance of the roads.

The Michigan project includes:

  • Waskevich Lane in Larkin Township, covering two lane miles and incorporating more than 1,600 lbs. of recycled plastic, which is equivalent in weight to more than 114,000 plastic grocery bags.
  • Mid-bay County Line Road in Larkin Township, covering two lane miles and incorporating more than 1,600 lbs. of recycled plastic, which is equivalent in weight to more than 114,000 plastic grocery bags.
  • Julie Ann Drive in Larkin Township, covering one lane mile and incorporating more than 800 lbs. of recycled plastic, which is equivalent in weight to more than 57,000 plastic grocery bags.
  • Badour Road in Bullock Creek, covering one half lane mile and incorporating more than 400 lbs. or recycled plastic, which is equivalent in weight to more than 28,500 plastic grocery bags.
  • The Global Dow Center parking lot, with 16,000 square yards incorporating more than 2,300 lbs. of recycled plastic, which is equivalent in weight to more than 164,000 plastic grocery bags.
  • The Saginaw Valley State University parking lot, with 14,500 square yards incorporating more than 4,100 lbs. of recycled plastic, which is equivalent in weight to more than 292,000 plastic grocery bags.

Winpak supplied the plastic scrap used in the projects, keeping that waste out of landfills. Bit Mat Products of Michigan, K-Tech Specialty Coatings and Central Asphalt also collaborated on the Michigan projects.

About Dow
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines one of the broadest technology sets in the industry with asset integration, focused innovation and global scale to achieve profitable growth and become the most innovative, customer centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company. Dow’s portfolio of performance materials, industrial intermediates and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of differentiated science-based products and solutions for our customers in high-growth segments, such as packaging, infrastructure and consumer care. Dow operates 113 manufacturing sites in 31 countries and employs approximately 37,000 people. Dow delivered pro forma sales of approximately $50 billion in 2018. References to Dow or the Company mean Dow Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information, please visit www.dow.com or follow @DowNewsroom on Twitter.

For further information, please contact:
Jennifer West
(281) 966-4926

Bobby Jones
(312) 729-4308