This kind of rubber crumb, a test batch made at the facility, is another of the products that will be produced and is popular for use in playgrounds. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Mess starting to be cleaned up at tire recycling facility in Ponoka County

Deal to front expenses by county looking like a positive investment

Following an almost four year odyssey, the mess of tires north of Ponoka may be crumbling to the ground.

Nearly a year ago, National Tire Recycling Group owners Yarolslav Stetsyuk and Vasyl Bilavych were able to purchase the former Cutting Edge Recycling property located just east of Highway 2A along Bobtail Road.

With some financial assistance from Ponoka County to go alongside deals struck with the county and the Alberta Recycling Management Authority (ARMA), the company will soon begin full scale shredding of tires at the facility.

“A lot of work has been getting done, cleaning up quite the mess that was left on the site and getting both the new shredder and conveyor operational,” said Stetsyuk, during a tour of the facility June 30.

The shredder, at a cost of $207,000, was bought from North Carolina while the conveyor was purchased from Quebec. The money for each piece was provided by Ponoka County earlier this year as part of an agreement that will see the county paid back as revenue comes in. Some of that revenue will come from ARMA through a contract to process passenger vehicle tires with money also coming in from selling processed products.

“There is about 2,000 tons of shredded material on site already, so we have a good amount to start processing with,” he stated.

“With some retail prices coming in at about $800 per ton and us having more than 30,000 tons of tires, the market is definitely there and we have about two years worth of inventory here.”

And the big money is in the mining tires, as each tire is about 80 to 85 per cent natural rubber whereas passenger tires are about 25 per cent.

“It’s just not cost effective to simply process the program (passenger) tires without the ARMA contract, even though there is still a market for them,” Stetsyuk said.

While the plan is to just process the program tires for now, Stetsyuk explained there are bigger plans ahead.

“Right now, we want to make things happen and finish off the contract. Once that’s done, we will move onto the big mining tires plus look at using the only mobile tire shredder in Canada to process passenger tires on site as well as work on making a profit. We also will be looking into plastics recycling by refurbishing the old warehouse and using it,” he explained.

“But, we could not have done this without the help from Ponoka County. We still would have done what we could, but it would have been a much longer period of time and we thank them for helping make all of this happen.”

 

The brand new tire shredder, sitting on a new concrete base, will soon have a large conveyor positioned at one end to feed tires into the unit so processing can begin. It will also be encased in a building later this fall to keep things moving during the winter. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

The old warehouse, which will eventually be reconstructed, sits next to a cleared and clean yard area at National Tire Recycling. The area will not only provide space for crews to work, but will also address drainage issues on the property. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

This look inside the shredding mechanism of the company’s mobile shredding unit shows numerous teeth that cut the tires into pieces which are then pushed into a large capacity bin. The unit is a transformed paper shredder and is the only known one in Canada. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

National Tire Recycling has turned a former paper shredder into one that can shred passenger tires on location for further processing. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

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