Pumice is a volcanic rock so light that it floats, and large blocks can be easily lifted. It occurs mainly in the central North Island, but because it floats it can be found around the New Zealand coastline. The beaches of Lake Taupō consist of pumice sands. In 2003 over 173,000 tonnes of pumice were mined from the Waikato and Bay of Plenty. It is mainly used as fill in road construction, for drainage and building foundations. Pumice sand makes lightweight concrete bricks.
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