From waste to construction material: NEWSand to be trialled in roadbuilding

From waste to construction material: NEWSand to be trialled in roadbuilding

The National Environmental Agency (NEA) has awarded a tender to three companies to conduct field trials in the use of treated incineration bottom ash as road base or sub-base material. Nisha Rahim reports.

SINGAPORE: The National Environmental Agency (NEA) has awarded a tender to three companies to conduct field trials in the use of treated incineration bottom ash as road base or sub-base material.

The trial will be conducted along a stretch of Tanah Merah Coast Road from mid-2020.

Speaking at the Year Towards Zero Waste appreciation lunch on Monday (Nov 25), Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli said that Inashco B. V., REMEX Mineral Singapore and Zerowaste Asia will begin the trials as part of the Government's effort to reduce waste.

These companies will be collecting and treating around 3,000 tonnes of incinerated bottom ash generated from the Waste-to-Energy Plants in Singapore, according to NEA.

READ: Zero Waste Masterplan to focus on electronics, packaging, food waste: Masagos

“Through science and technology, we have found a way to convert residue from waste incineration into useful construction material, which we call NEWSand. Like NEWater, NEWSand is born out of our drive to overcome constraint, and to create a precious resource from waste,” Mr Masagos said.

This will help Singapore to "close (its) waste loop, and extend the lifespan of Semakau (landfill)", he added.

The three companies will collect and treat about 3,000 tonnes of incineration bottom ash, and the data from the field trials will be used to review provisional environmental standards in regulating the use of NEWSand.

Mr Masagos had previously said in his Committee of Supply speech in March that the Government was studying how to turn incineration ash into construction material.

The development of NEWSand is part of efforts to reduce waste sent to Semakau landfill by 30 per cent each day, in alignment with Singapore's first Zero Waste Master Plan. This is expected to extend Semakau's lifespan beyond the projected 2035.

READ: Singapore to reduce Semakau waste by 30% under first Zero Waste Master Plan

According to NEA, NEWSand has already been used twice - to construct a 105m temporary concrete footpath linking Our Tampines Hub to the Darul Ghufran Mosque, and a 3D-printed concrete bench created in collaboration with local industry player Pan-United Corporation.

These are also plans to build a second 24m footpath outside the Environment Building in early 2020.

Said NEA CEO Tan Meng Dui: “Through these efforts, we hope to extend the lifespan of Semakau landfill beyond 2035 and keep it running for as long as possible. The successful implementation and use of NEWSand marks a key step in Singapore’s drive towards becoming a Zero Waste Nation.”

Source: CNA/cc(mn)

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