Project details

Committees

LIFE SustainEuroRoad

Demonstration of an ICT system to optimize the road construction works and reduce their environmental impact

http://sustainableroads.eu/

Start date: 01.06.2014

Duration: 36 months

Coordinator: Union des Syndicats de l'Industrie Routière Française

Budget: 1.31 M€

Details

Emissions of carbon dioxide are the main cause of the “anthropogenic” greenhouse effect. In fact, more than 50% of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are carbonic gas. This value increases to 90% if only industrial emissions are considered. Thus, reducing CO2² emissions should be a priority for industries.

The road transportation industry is responsible for more than 20% of European CO2² emissions, with 5% of those emissions generated by road construction. Little has been done to date to address the impact of this sector.

Apart from the energy and fuel used to lay tarmac, energy is also needed to produce and refine materials and transport materials and equipment. It is important to note that the energy needed to construct one kilometre of a one-lane road is the equivalent of burning 86 940 litres of petrol.

In this context, the LIFE SustainEuroRoad project proposes to fine tune and validate innovative software to drastically reduce the environmental impact of road construction and maintenance in Europe. If properly tested on different types of roads and environments, this software could be used in the technical specifications of the work on every road in Europe, significantly improving construction techniques for this sector.

The LIFE SustainEuroRoad project has two main targets:

  • Reducing the consumption of energy, including fossil fuel and natural resources, and;
  • Decreasing GHG emissions linked to road building and maintenance processes.

The software will consist of a computerised decision-support tool that will be able to calculate CO2² emissions, energy consumption and the use of natural resources in road construction and maintenance from the design phase through the entire lifecycle.

To validate these ambitious targets, the software will be tested in four demonstration sites (France, Germany, Hungary, Spain) under different technical requirements (new road vs. renovation, and motorway vs. road) and different meteorological conditions (Atlantic in France, Continental in Germany and Hungary, Mediterranean in Spain).

This software will be a unique tool which decreases costs whilst ensuring the quality of the roads remains high. It will enable local authorities to record environmental assessments of road activities and explain the use of public funds in this domain.

Expected results:

  • The LIFE SustainEuroRoad project will develop software that:Assesses the environmental impact of the construction and maintenance of road infrastructure;
  • Creates 37% energy savings;
  • Reduces CO2² emissions by 31%; and
  • Decreases the consumption of natural compounds by 70%.

Considering that European countries built around 13 600 km of roads in 2009, and that the average CO2² emission rate can reach up to 100 TCO2²/km, estimations show that emissions could have been reduced to 421 600 TCO2 in 2009. 

List of achievements

Lessons learnt

Contact

Contact person: Christine LEROY
Address:
Tel: 33144133283
email: Christine.Leroy@usirf.com

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