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Exploring the potential of Australia’s ELTs

Australia – A joint initiative involving Australia’s federal government and the nation’s tyre industry has been formed to combat the ever-growing domestic stockpile of used tyres. According to environment minister Greg Hunt, the Tyre Stewardship Australia scheme will ‘explore the potential’ of the country’s end-of-life tyres (ELTs).

The scheme is aimed at raising the 16% domestic recycling rate for ELTs by forming new industries and product applications while reducing unsustainable disposal practices. Currently, Hunt argues, a large proportion of ELTs is still landfilled, exported or illegally dumped.

Several leading tyre manufacturers, including Michelin, Continental and Pirelli, have already backed the scheme. They intend to offer 25 cents per tyre to create a research fund to identify environment-friendly applications for ELTs, potentially including road surfacing, playground surfaces, motorsport crash barriers, brake pads, flooring and fuel.

Tyre Stewardship Australia’s chairman Gerry Morvell says that the initiative will boost sustainable enterprises as well as employment. ‘The scheme gives the Australian tyre industry the opportunity to show strong environmental and product stewardship leadership,’ he adds.

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