In supplying the Victorian construction industry with sustainable, high quality, recycled materials, Alex Fraser has won the Premier’s Sustainability Award for large business. Roads & infrastructure takes a look at how the company paved their way to success.
Every year the Victorian Government holds a celebration for those that are leading the way in innovative or sustainable practices throughout the state.
With 10 categories covering everything from education to environmental justice, businesses and initiatives are judged by an independent panel of environmental experts.
In the opening speech of the night Premier Dan Andrews said the Sustainability Awards honour the things that matter most to Victorians, connection to each other and to the place we call home.
This year marked the 18th awards ceremony and Alex Fraser’s Sustainable Supply Hub won the Premier’s Sustainability Award for Large Business.
Annually, the company produces more than three million tonnes of quality construction products made from diverse, high volume waste. Their materials then go on to be used throughout the construction industry which contributes almost $21.6 billion to the Victorian economy.
Alex Fraser’s Laverton Sustainable Supply Hub is the largest integrated recycling facility in Victoria, comprising a construction and demolition waste recycling plant, a glass recycling plant and a high recycled technology asphalt plant.
Supplying a multitude of civil construction projects around Melbourne, Alex Fraser’s Sustainable Supply Hub recovers glass, asphalt, brick and concrete, and recycles it to produce up to 1 million tonnes of recycled roadbase, 500,000 tonnes of sustainable asphalt and 200,000 tonnes of recycled glass sand each year.
The Laverton Hub reduces landfill, carbon emissions and the need for transport and extraction of construction materials by producing alternatives that are recycled locally.
Officially opened in May 2019 by Victorian Environment Minister Lily D’Ambrosio, Alex Fraser’s Sustainable Supply Hub employs over 110 people.
Peter Murphy, Alex Fraser Managing Director, said the Sustainable Supply Hub provides the materials that people need to build greener roads on a massive scale.
“Every year more than a million tonnes of material is brought here for recycling. We use a range of crushing, screening, air knife separation, magnetic separation and other technologies to separate the materials to make high quality sand road base and asphalt for the construction industry,” Murphy said.
“In the last year we’ve delivered two and a half million tonnes of material to build greener roads and that includes more than a million bottles worth of glass recycling and more than half a million tonnes of sustainable asphalt.”
Alex Fraser has developed a wide range of high quality and sustainable asphalt and roadbase products under its Green Roads banner. PolyPave Asphalt is one of the company’s latest innovations, incorporating tonnes of recycled RAP, glass and plastic containers to create a truly sustainable pavement that is being used by more than a dozen councils to build greener roads in municipalities across Victoria and Queensland.
The first application of PolyPave took place in 2018 for the Yarra City Council, on the fringe of Melbourne’s CBD.
The maiden project recycled approximately 7,300 two litre plastic bottles, 55,000 glass bottles and several tonnes of reclaimed asphalt pavement into the roads; reduced waste to landfill by 97.3 tonnes and cut carbon emissions by 633 kilograms.
Infinitely recyclable, PolyPave roads can be recycled at the end of their life too, reclaimed, profiled and reprocessed into RAP (Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement) for reuse.
In addition to winning the Premier’s Sustainability Award, 2020 was a huge year for Alex Fraser. The company recycled its one millionth tonne of glass and won the Victorian Transport Association’s Sustainable Environment Award for expanding the distribution of its recycled glass sand into Melbourne’s south east, through its Clarinda Recycling Facility.
Alex Fraser’s Clarinda Recycling Facility, much like the Laverton Hub, supplies major road, rail and municipal projects with a range of high-spec, sustainable materials.
Clarinda Recycling has the capacity to supply up to one million tonnes of green roads construction materials to south eastern projects each year – recycling the equivalent of 25 per cent of the construction and demolition material and glass waste recovered in Melbourne.
In December 2020, the Clarinda site was granted a 10-year operational extension.
Alex Fraser has committed to continue to make a positive contribution to its local community and environment and recently teamed up with Greenfleet, a leading environmental not for profit and Australia’s first carbon offset provider, to take practical climate action.
As part of the partnership Alex Fraser have committed to provide funding for Greenfleet to plant enough native trees to offset every tonne of carbon created at the Clarinda Recycling Facility, and help restore Victoria’s native forests and ecosystems.
The initiative will see Alex Fraser offset 100 per cent of the 2,500 tonnes of carbon emissions generated at Clarinda Recycling.
“I’m really proud of what we do here, we’re preserving natural resources keeping things out of landfill and our customers are very focused on building projects on time, on specification and on budget and we help them do that and get a better outcome for the environment,” Murphy said.