Canadians are proudly environmentally conscious. The rumblings across the border have only heightened the national commitment to sustainability and increased the focus on making the right choices to reduce the negative impact of climate change.
There are many ways to be impactful; from lowering carbon emissions to reducing water consumption and from conserving energy to incorporating green infrastructure and LID (low impact development) technologies.
The movement to include sustainable choices, which can possibly reduce the effects of climate change, has people looking to “green” alternatives. Green infrastructure, especially green roofs and permeable paving, has been used by our European neighbours for more than three decades and is just becoming the norm in Canada.
Permeable paving is often the first step when including environmentally friendly alternatives into designs and projects due to the affordability, ease of installation and immediate impact towards the “greening” goal.
The environmental advantages of permeable paving are multi-faceted.
Not All LID Permeable Paving Products are the Same
As one can imagine, not all permeable paving products are the same.
There are permeable alternatives for traditional surfaces such as asphalt and concrete. There are permeable interlocking paving stones which can be designated as pervious relating to the joint spaces between the individual pavers or by the pavers being porous as well. There is also a geogrid or geocell type product, most often manufactured from plastic that is filled with either grass or gravel, providing a pervious surface that can be used for driving, parking, and pedestrian access.
The porous surface and the base construction below are what provide the first main environmental impact of permeable paving. Pervious surfaces help to capture and manage stormwater on site where it lands. The storm water run-off is greatly reduced if not eliminated which is impactful on many levels. Storm water run-off will often carry with it damaging pollutants that get into the neighbouring natural water bodies. These pollutants include oil, gas and even residue from winter salt. It is now known that our lakes and rivers in and around Toronto and the GTA have a salt concentration that is too high for the natural ecosystems. Porous paving surfaces are also known to help reduce the damaging effects of flooding. Using permeable parking lots as strategically placed infiltration areas can be helpful for local home and business owners by reducing the volume of run off and thus reducing the risk of flooding.
As mentioned, permeable surfaces also reduce the need for winter salt by reducing, sometimes even eliminating, the well know freeze-thaw cycle. A permeable surface with a well-designed base will capture the melting snow and ice greatly reducing the need for salt, resulting in cost savings as well as protecting the neighbouring ecosystems from the salt runoff.
The Ecoraster Permeable Paving System Helps Reduce the Negative Effects of Run Off
Permeable paving is well-known and accepted to help reduce the negative effects of run off.
Geogrid products, such as Ecoraster, have a majority of the surface area “open”. The open spaces or cells are filled with a drainable product such as clear gravel or uncompacted soil. The grid design ensures that the fill does not migrate or compact even after repeated use. The surface, that can be used for all applications; residential, commercial, industrial and even military, stays fully pervious.
Ecoraster, a world-renown geogrid product, can be considered one of the most environmentally friendly porous paving products due to many factors.
The Ecoraster system is more than 95% open ensuring maximum permeability when the cells are filled with drainable products. Customers report using no salt during the winter months when the system is installed focusing on porosity.
Further, Ecoraster is manufactured in a low-carbon footprint manner in a green-field factory. The Ecoraster system has been tested, to the highest standards, and is both fish toxicity and groundwater neutral, making it the perfect product for environmentally sensitive areas.
Ecoraster is manufactured from 100% post-consumer recycled plastics and is 100% recyclable and/or reusable.
Ecoraster is a Declare label product and Red List Free. It is fully sustainable and has a long lifecycle including a 20 year guarantee.
The tremendously positive environmental advantages and immediate impact of using permeable paving are now widely embraced and accepted throughout Canada, especially in Toronto and the GTA. Ecoraster is a product proven, with almost 30 years of in-ground experience world-wide, to help achieve storm water management goals in an affordable, reliable and fully sustainable manner.
LID Permeable Paving Canada is the exclusive distributor of the Ecoraster system in Toronto and the GTA. We also service LID permeable paving installations throughout Ontario and Canada.