Tires kept from landfills

  • Dec. 29, 2010 8:00 p.m.

Alberta Environment and Alberta Recycling are making adjustments to the province’s tire recycling program.

With the continued goal of keeping tires out of landfills, the program will be expanding to include industrial and off-road tires. Changes will better reflect the costs of collecting, recycling and processing tires, and help sustain the tire recycling program.

There is no increase to the existing fee on car, pickup truck, and other light duty vehicle tires, which represent approximately 80 per cent of the tires in Alberta. As a result, the average Albertan consumer is not directly affected by the changes.

“Alberta is a leader in Canada for the recycling of scrap tires,” said Environment Minister Rob Renner. “The ultimate goal is to keep scrap tires out of municipal landfills. By making these necessary adjustments to the program, we will ensure the recycling program continues and is financially viable.”

Until 2006, the technology to process industrial and off-road tires was not widely available. Since then, with the introduction of new technology, 22,000 tonnes of off-road tires have been processed.

Recycling fees are a fraction of the cost of the tires. For example, the typical maximum cost of medium off-road tires with rim sizes between 24 and 33 inches can be as much as $6,000 per tire, while the recycling fee will be $100 per tire.

“This is a tremendous move forward,” said Sid Hinton, chair of Alberta Recycling. “It will ensure that sound environmental solutions for scrap tires in Alberta can continue into the future, and that the solutions are funded by those who buy and use the tires.”

Changes to the environmental fees will come into effect on April 1.

Each year, more than four million tires are collected for recycling from municipal landfills and tire and vehicle dealers. These tires are processed and made into recycled material and products used in Alberta, Canada, the United States and overseas. More than 60 million tires have been recycled since the program began in 1992.

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