Plastic Walkways In Nature Reserves

Recycled plastics have come a long way over recent years and can now be found in many areas of our communities. The need to recycle plastic has never been greater as concern grows over the number of waste plastic carrier bags and bottles continue to rise.

Plastic walkways, boardwalks and decking are a superb way in which we can re-use and recycle our unwanted plastic. In fact, to produce just 1.5 metres of plastic walkway, it will save around 1500 plastic bottles from ending up in our landfills!

Recycled plastic walkways are produced as a viable alternative to traditional timber. Almost anything which can be made from wood can now be made from recycled plastics instead. This is great news for the environment as not only does it save on plastics hitting our waste dumps, it also means that there is less demand for raw materials.

Plastic decking and walkways also offer a huge range of benefits over their timber counterparts. They require no preservatives or chemicals to preserve them, they are long lasting and durable, they will not rot or splinter and they last at least five times longer.

This is why many nature reserves have now taken the decision to use plastic walkways throughout their nature reserves. The RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection f Birds) is one such organisation which has installed these walkways to replace old wooden versions. Other wildlife reserves who have installed such decking are Big Waters Nature Reserve in Newcastle, Sizewell Betts near Aldeburgh, Howden Marsh in East Yorkshire and various installations by British Waterways.

Another great thing about these walkways is that they can be manufactured to be totally sympathetic into their natural environment. Available in non-slip finishes which mimic wood grain, they effortlessly blend in. In fact, you have probably walked on them at some point and not even noticed so ‘timber like’ in appearance they can be.

Benefit of recycled plastic walkways:

ü Will not rot, split or splinter

ü Available in a range of natural colours

ü Require no annual maintenance

ü Lasts at least five times longer than timber

ü Available in slip-resistant finish

ü Strong, durable and cost effective

ü Fully recycled eco-friendly product

CASE STUDY: Langlands Moss, near Glasgow, Scotland.

This designated nature reserve is located close to East Kilbride and attracts up to 12,000 visitors every year. It is here that recycled plastic walkways have been installed to allow visitors to enjoy the reserve and at the same time protect a rare bogland habitat.

With the help of fund raising and a Heritage Lottery Fund Grant, the reserve took the decision to replace the old and deteriorating wooden boardwalk with recycled plastic. Duraplas recycled plastic was used to replaced the old boardwalk system throughout the reserve. This made an excellent choice as once installed, the plastic boardwalk would not be in danger of rotting, splitting or cracking in the wet environment and is now extremely easy to maintain.

For more information on recycled plastic walkways, boardwalks and decking, the internet has a wide range of information, manufacturers and suppliers you can browse.

Featured images:

Guest post by Richard Rix, preserving the environment wby purchasing recycled plastic lumber for his walkways and boardwalks.

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