International Conference on Sustainable Concrete Pavements: Practices, Challenges, and Directions
Sacramento, California, USA
September 15-17, 2010
Foreword to the Proceedings
The majority of concrete pavements in the U.S. interstate and primary systems are now routinely being designed to provide a service life of at least 40 years without requiring significant repair/rehabilitation treatments. While the new pavements are being designed and constructed using sound technical know-how, it is not clear that adequate attention is being paid to ensure that these new pavements are being implemented in a sustainable manner. A reason for this is that Best Practices guidance on sustainable practices is not readily available to pavement design engineers, specifiers, and constructors. Sustainable construction is of recent origin. However, its importance in the future evolution of our civilization cannot be denied. As resources diminish globally and the environment comes under increasing stress, the adoption of sustainable design and construction practices is being considered as an important strategy to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.
Currently, increasing attention is being paid to balance the economical needs for infrastructure development and the engineering strategies to be employed with the needs for sustainable environmental stewardship. With respect to pavement construction, many new terms and phrases have been introduced in the everyday lexicon of the concrete pavement and concrete materials technologists—green highways, environmentally responsible solutions, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), life cycle energy and emissions analysis/assessment, social/environmental benefits, carbon footprint, and ecological footprint. For concrete pavements, sustainability related considerations can be introduced at the design/engineering phase, in material selection, during construction, while in service, and ultimately at the end of the pavement’s life. In fact, sustainability-related considerations must be integrated through the whole life cycle of a pavement.
Although there is a strong desire, and in some cases there are mandates, to incorporate sustainability considerations in new concrete pavement design and construction and for management of existing concrete pavements, there are not widely accepted and clearly understood procedures and guidelines for doing so. This 2 1/2-day International Conference was organized as a part of technology transfer activities for the U.S. Advanced Concrete Pavement Technology (ACPT) Program that operates within the Federal Highway Administration. The conference objective was to provide an international forum to discuss the sustainable attributes of concrete pavements by presenting existing technologies, emerging research, approaches to measuring energy and environmental impact, user considerations, and international practices and experience. Specifically, there will be a discussion on improved and innovative processes for achieving sustainable concrete pavements through the pavement’s entire life cycle.
It is hoped that the discussion at the conference will help us set directions as to how we implement sustainable concrete pavement technologies. It is also hoped that transportation agencies (as facility owners) and industry worldwide will pay greater attention to the importance of balancing the economical considerations and engineering strategies of infrastructure development with the need for environmental stewardship.
The editors would like to thank the authors for supporting the objective of this conference by developing comprehensive papers on sustainable concrete and concrete pavement practices. The papers included in the proceedings were peer-reviewed for technical content, and the editors would also like to thank the conference steering committee members and the many reviewers who participated in the paper review process.
Shiraz Tayabji, Ph.D., P.E.
Co-Editor and Co-Chair, Conference Steering Committee
Peter Taylor, Ph. D.
Co-Editor and Co-Chair, Conference Technical Program Subcommittee