Press release

Colas opens the way with Vegecol, an asphalt mix with an 80% plant-based binder

On April 23, as part of a road renovation project in Vedène, France, teams from Colas had lay down 230 m² of light-colored Vegecol asphalt mix on the sidewalks near the Les Jardins school.

Vegecol is a light-colored asphalt mix with an innovative binder designed by the Colas research laboratory and manufactured in the Vitrolles plant, located less than 80 km from Vedène. The binder is mainly composed of a resin obtained from pine trees, manufactured by a French company, and an oil obtained from oleaginous plants. The binder is translucent, which makes it perfectly suited for visually-pleasing surfaces designed to highlight the natural color of the aggregates.

Vegecol asphalt mix is a low-carbon alternative to conventional visually appealing surfacing techniques used for example in urban development projects, such as deactivated concrete, paving stones, slabs, etc, and is also perfectly suited for building and renovating bike paths.

"We are delighted that the town of Vedène has entrusted us with the first project involving the plant-based Vegecol mix, which is part of the Group's low carbon approach", explains François-Xavier Deshorgue, who heads the Colas profit center in Sorgues.

Vegecol, a low carbon asphalt mix

The binder used to manufacture Vegecol is more than 80% plant-based, which means that it is actually a carbon sink. This is because the amount of carbon fixed by plants during their growth is greater than the carbon emitted to manufacture the binder.

In addition, Vegecol is a warm mix: lower manufacturing temperatures for warm asphalt mix means reduced greenhouse gas emissions compared to conventional hot mix, and makes it more comfortable for the workers to lay down.

Vegecol is therefore fully in line with Colas’ low carbon commitment. The Group has set ambitious objectives for 2030 that are compatible with the Paris Agreement: to reduce its direct greenhouse gas emissions by 30% and its upstream indirect emissions by 30%.

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