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RMA: US tyre recycling has come a long way

United States – The US Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) has issued a report detailing the progress of domestic tyre recycling efforts. More than 90% of scrap tyre piles have been cleaned up and 96% of the 230 million-plus tyres discarded last year were reused in several markets, it notes.

The stockpile of tyres in the USA has been slashed from 1 billion in 1990 to 75 million in 2013. Most of the remaining stockpiles are in Colorado and Texas, but the former recently passed a law to clean them up.

Almost 90% of scrap tyres went to three markets: tyre-derived fuel used 56%; ground rubber 25%; and civil engineering 5%. Ground rubber is used in sports fields, as playground cover, in asphalt road surfaces and in new tyre construction. Shredded tyres can also be used as a substitute for ‘fill’ materials, such as sand or gravel, in road and landfill construction and septic fields.

‘Tyre manufacturers have worked across the nation to help establish effective state scrap tyre management programmes, often funded by user fees on tyre sales, to enforce regulations, clean up tyre piles, and promote environmentally sound, cost-effective markets for scrap tyres,’ says RMA’s Dan Zielinski.

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