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Stakeholders debate concerns over tyres

Over 50 representatives from the tyre industry gathered to debate concerns at the second Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) Tyres Stakeholder Forum in London.

Stakeholders believe enough potential applications for used tyre shred will emerge. But with a landfill ban looming, they believe this will not aid the situation in the short term.

With the ban set for implementation in July this year, they believe many of the possible uses will take a further lengthy period of development, manufacture and marketing.

Attendees suggested that the ban will result in a surplus of car and van tyres, with the actual size of the problem dependent on other related questions.

These include the position of the use of shredded tyre material for landfill engineering and the volume of tyres used as a fuel source for cement manufacture and other potential applications.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) later said that the European Community had given an initial positive response to their seeking clarification on the use of shredded tyres for landfill engineering.

WRAP tyres material project manager Steve Waite said: “It is clear that real concern exists regarding the introduction of the Landfill Directive banning the disposal of tyre shred into land-fills from July this year.

“Therefore, the news from Defra stating that tyre shred used as landfill engineering may be classed as recovery and thus allowable is most welcome news for the industry.”

It was also identified that there will be a large rise in recovery costs that will either have to be absorbed by the sector or passed on; with viable alternative recovery routes required as existing outlets are likely to be full and able to charge higher gate fees.

While stakeholders suggested that information dissemination on the situation over the next months should be improved through quarterly updates, guidance from central Government and active promotion by WRAP could also be very beneficial.

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