From July 12 to 13, a group of 75 asphalt pavement industry leaders hyper-focused on reaching net zero collaborated on how to do just that. Building on the momentum generated during the National Asphalt Pavement Association’s Midyear Meeting in Kansas City, Mo., they engaged in presentations and breakout group discussions at the first gathering of its kind: The Road Forward Summit.

The summit was crafted around The Road Forward goals, which aim to achieve net zero carbon emissions in asphalt pavement production and construction by 2050, leveraging advances in clean energy and industry-specific technologies. Those include pavement design, material inputs, plant operations, equipment, trucking, and maintenance.

“This summit was designed to take the foundation that was built with The Road Forward and strategically determine the next steps needed to move the entire industry forward,” said organizer Richard Willis, NAPA’s Vice President for Engineering, Research, & Technology (pictured reviewing visual notes captured throughout the summit).

The Road Forward partnerships kicked off in May 2023 with two inaugural partners: Peckham Industries and Cargill Asphalt Solutions. Representatives of both companies attended The Road Forward Summit and provided commentary on what they experienced.

“As an asphalt mix producer, Peckham is excited to see the continued efforts to make The Road Forward accessible to all contractors across the country,” said Will Hadeka, General Manager for Peckham. “The collaboration that The Road Forward provides will be key in driving innovative solutions on our journey to a net zero future.”

Dan Staebell, Asphalt Solutions Business Development Manager for Cargill, added, “The Road Forward Summit was unlike any NAPA experience I have had. The synergy created by having producers, suppliers, and agencies together brainstorming solutions to help advance our industry’s sustainability goals is a step we needed, and one Cargill fully supports. I’m really looking forward to seeing the action plan built from the ideas that were generated at the summit.”

Partners Continue to Invest in The Road Forward

In its first year, 2022, two dozen partners signed on to support The Road Forward. Every one of those first-year supporters renewed their commitment in 2023 to continue their financial and intellectual support of The Road Forward. They are:

  • Ajax Paving Industries of Florida, LLC
  • Astec Industries
  • bp
  • Cargill Asphalt Solutions
  • Colas USA
  • Construction Partners, Inc.
  • CRH Americas Materials
  • Dow
  • Earthwave Technologies, Inc.
  • Gallagher Asphalt Corp.
  • Granite Construction
  • Holcim US
  • Ingevity
  • Kokosing Materials, Inc.
  • Kraton Corporation
  • Lindy Paving
  • M.U.C. Holdings, LLC
  • Peckham Industries, Inc.
  • Summit Materials
  • Surface Tech, LLC
  • Teichert Materials
  • Vinci Construction USA
  • Volvo Construction Equipment
  • Wirtgen America, Inc.

With six new partners enrolled so far in 2023, a total of 30 NAPA member companies are directly engaging with the challenges and opportunities of reaching net zero. New partners are welcome until August 1, when the 2023 partner cycle will close.

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