Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has signed legislation allowing the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) to start using asphalt made from recycled roofing shingles. It also allows businesses to increase the amount of shingles used in asphalt production and requires IDOT to maximize the use of recycled materials in construction projects. The governor’s office estimates the state will save more than $8 million annually through the new legislation.
“In the midst of one of the busiest construction seasons in state history, we must continue to embrace green practices in building our roads,” Quinn says. “This law will keep more shingles out of landfills, benefit the environment and save the state millions of dollars by expanding our use of recycled materials.”
House Bill 1326, sponsored by Rep. Daniel V. Beiser (D-Alton) and Sen. Dave Koehler (D-Peoria), allows IDOT to use asphalt made with materials from recycling facilities that process shingles, following regulations established by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. The law also directs IDOT to use recycled materials in its projects as much as possible, saving more than an estimated $8 million per year. The agency must report the results of those efforts to the Illinois House and Senate Transportation Committees each year.
“Under Governor Quinn’s leadership, the expanded use of recycled asphalt in roadway pavements is just the latest green initiative the Illinois Department of Transportation has undertaken,” says Acting Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider. “Although motorists will not notice the difference, this new law is good for the environment and ultimately will save money.”
The new law also allows businesses that specialize in waste collection from construction and demolition sites to double the amount of shingles they can provide to recycling facilities for use later in the production of asphalt.