Date of Award

Fall 2011

Project Type


Program or Major

Civil Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Kevin Gardner


Widely varying recycled material requirements across state lines has been perceived as a significant barrier to greater use of recycled materials in highway construction by state contractors and industry. The goal of this thesis is to create a procedure to compile, compare, contrast and finally synthesize documents that support a priority list of recycled materials and applications for which material specifications can be harmonized among regional states in the US.

This work compiled background research on selected materials and related regulations into standardized templates. The information analyzed was communicated with EPA, FHWA, and state representatives to approve a breakdown priority list and discussed through a working meeting to make an action plan toward regional harmonization. A life-cycle assessment was conducted in a representative state for the easiest recycled material to harmonize to determine the environmental benefits of use. A prioritization system was created to choose the first material/application specification to harmonize.