The process of tire recycling is very important for the reduction of waste, cleaning up the environment, and also the fight against climate change.
Tires are a very common source of waste, and are becoming an increasingly problematic issue for the environment. One of the main problematic issues lies in the durability of tires. Tires can be very hard to break down for recycling, and so, in many cases, are left in large heaps in scrap yards or other locations.
With as many as one tire per person discarded each year, you can begin to see how the issue of tire disposal is an important one. Many of these tires end up in landfill sites, and the stockpiling of tires has important health and environmental risks associated with it.
The process of recycling tires is by no means breakthrough. The technology associated with the recycling of tires has been around for over 100 years. When the "masticator" was invented by Thomas Hancock around 1820, industry had the ability to mash up old rubber based products to turn into shreds.
When the shredding process was complete, these rubber pieces could then be mashed together as larger blocks to be transported and used in the manufacturing of new products. In fact, due to the high cost of rubber which began around 1910, lasting for many years thereafter, around 50% of all rubber products were recycled.
The main issue concerning tire build ups and stockpiling is due to the levels of toxins which can be leaked into the ground in damp conditions. This issue is also seen on regular landfill sites, and is a key concern for environmentalists.
With almost every type of tire having the ability to be recycled, there should be no excuse for tire mountains building up ruining the environment. The only tires which currently are unable to be recycled are the much larger industrial tires commonly found on large tucks. With research been conducted into how we can recycle these products too, the process of tire recycling will hopefully become more common in years to come.
- Written by James Bratley