The Hon. Greg Hunt MP
Minister for the Environment
Boosting the environment by putting old tyres to good use
20 January 2014
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Today the Federal Government launched a significant new Product Stewardship Scheme to help tackle the significant environmental challenges arising from used tyres.
Every year in Australia around 48 million tyres reach their end of life. At the moment most old tyres are land-filled, stockpiled, exported or illegally dumped. This poses serious health and environmental risks.
This new industry initiative aims to increase domestic tyre recycling, support new technologies, expand the market for tyre-derived products and reduce the number of end-of-life tyres ending up in landfill or illegal dumps.
Tyres are a valuable commodity with great potential to be utilised at end of life in a range of applications. Recycled tyres can be used to make new rubber products, in roads and pavements, and in sporting fields and playgrounds.
Old tyres can also be used as an alternative fuel source for producers of energy and cement.
Stakeholders across the tyre supply chain, including tyre and vehicle importers, retailers, fleet operators, local governments, collectors, recyclers and the mining industry will participate in the new scheme.
Major type importers Continental, Goodyear Dunlop, Michelin, Pirelli, Toyo and Yokohama have provided the initial funding to get the scheme started.
As part of this major new agreement, participants in the scheme will commit to only working with others who support environmentally sound end of life management of tyres. These commitments will be supported by an audit program and education products about best practice will be developed.
The scheme will also support new technology and ways to develop stronger domestic markets for tyre derived products to strengthen the demand for local tyre recycling.
The tyre industry has established a company called Tyre Stewardship Australia (TSA) to administer the new scheme, to be chaired by Mr Gerry Morvell.
The work of Tyre Stewardship Australia will complement important efforts of state and territory governments who are working to ensure that those who handle and dispose of tyres are doing so responsibly and in accordance with the law.
For further information, visit http://www.environment.gov.au/topics/environment-protection/national-waste-policy/tyres.