This keynote lecture provides an introduction and overview of the challenges and opportunities that face the paving asphalt industry in view of major changes in technology, economy and the environment. The scope and issues for dealing with these challenges are rather wide and complex because the goals, perspectives and expectation for environmental practice and control have changed dramatically over the last couple of decades. Hence the required approach has to be multidisciplinary, based on established scientific concepts and sound engineering principles as well as closely focused. This presentation provides historical background and facts for dealing successfully with environmental asphalt issues in the past. In addition to environmental protection, the broader scope concerning the environment includes the increasing awareness and concepts for ecology and sustainability. The achievements and the status of current technology are presented for:
1. Environmental protection,
3. Sustainability development,
5. Policies and Environmental Law.
For future direction and opportunities, suggestions are made for new materials and processes based on
existing innovative technology such as ‘warm asphalts’ for reducing energy consumption and emissions or
improvement of recycling of asphalt pavements to limit the continuing increase in resource consumption with
the goal to achieve sustainability.