Quesnel will be part of the first lignin asphalt trial in BC.
Chris Cobin, the Director of Infrastructure and Capital Works, explains.
“It’s called lignin, and what it is is a natural by-product of pulp production. They’ve done trials on this in Alberta and back in eastern Canada where they substitute the bitumen, which is the petroleum in the asphalt, and utilize lignin which is a natural binder.”
Cobin says the work will be done on Neighbour Road in South Quesnel.
“We had the opportunity to partner with FPInnovations and Quesnel Paving, and we’re paving approximately 40 percent of this project with the lignin and then the remainder with our conditional asphalt, and then they will compares the results.”
Cobin says they will be monitoring them year by year.
“It’s a trial so what they’ll do is check to see how well the asphalt stands up, particularly through the winter into the spring. Just the composition of the asphalt, how it is structurally sound compared to traditional methods, and the goal is to potentially utilize lignin as more of a greener substitute than the petroleum based bitumen.”
Cobin says it’s part of the city’s regular paving program so there is no additional cost to do this test.
Paving is scheduled to take place next week.