By Denna Bowman
In 2008 more than 95% of end of life tyres entered the recycling and recovery routes, a new report has revealed.
During the past 15 years, the volumes of end of life tyres benefiting from ecological treatment have followed an unstopped increase of 57%, according to the European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers Association (ETRMA).
The results highlight a steady yearly increase of 4% between the years 1984 to 2008.
Such unprecedented result demonstrates the strategy deployed by the European tyre manufacturers within ETRMA to anticipate the regulatory, environmental and economic challenges imposed to Member States by the EU landfill ban is highly efficient.
In 2008, up to 60% of end of life tyres arisings on the European market were collected and treated under Producer Responsibility obligations.
Used tyres arisings amounted to 3.3 million tonnes in the European Union countries. While energy recovery maintains its level around 35%, material recycling is the real market benefiting from the landfill diverting. Between 1994 and 2008, the recycling rate progressed to reach as much as 40%. This also means that the recycling applications market is being sustainably consolidated.
To date 14 not-for-profit companies in European countries backed up by a proper statutory regime, organize the collection and ecologically sound treatment of end-of-life tyres.
The European tyre manufacturers’ ambition is to further reinforce the healthy and gradually maturing ELT recycling market with solid product and process standards based on scientific and economic evidence. They are being developed within national and European bodies.