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County to recycle old shingles
Shingles to be ground and mixed into asphalt
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The Barton County Landfill receives between 1,500 and 2,000 tons of shingles per year, Solid Waste Director Phil Hathcock reported to the Barton County Commissioners Monday morning.  

Up until now, all those shingles have wound up in the Barton County Landfill’s construction and demolition waste site. But that is about to change.

How to recycle the shingles has been a hot topic nationally recently and his staff has researched options locally, Hathcock said. “We want to removed that waste stream out of the C&D.”  

The solution is an agreement with Venture Corporation of Great Bend. The company will come and pick up the shingles at no cost to the county.

As asphalt shingles are primarily composed of oil, paving contractors frequently use ground shingles in their asphalt mix, and that is what Venture is going to do. All landfill personnel have to do is some preliminary sorting and cleaning.

“This is kind of in the infant stages now,” Hathcock said. Currently it is cost prohibitive for the county to grind and reuse the shingles for its own use, but that may change.

Barton County still generates revenue from the shingles. The landfill charges $32 per ton for all C&D trash.

The number one use of recycled shingles is to make roads, according to the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association. Ground-up shingles are typically added to the pavement and in many cases may actually improve the quality. 

Other uses include using the material as an input to make roofing products or road maintenance products, or to produce energy.

Asphalt roofing shingles constitute nearly two-thirds of the roofing market for both new homes and roof replacements, the Environmental Protection Agency reported. Annually, roof installation generates an estimated seven to 10 million tons of shingle tear-off waste and installation scrap nationwide.

More than 60 manufacturing plants across the U.S. generate another 750,000 to 1 million tons of manufacturing shingle waste.