An initiative studying potential threats posed by tires, The Tire Industry Project (TIP), that united 11 tire industry CEOs, has been showing success and is on the right track. This statement was made by Goodyear’s senior representative Kimm Jarden announced during this year’s Rubber Recycling Symposium in Ontario. The initiative also considers problems of scrap tire disposal, recycling and further utilization of scrap rubber.

Goodyear’s representative Jarden stressed that the project is based on science and it aims to promote the scientific perspective towards tires and to provide accurate data on their human health and environment impacts. The TIP also seeks to create new approaches and standards implemented within the tire industry. Up until now, the project managed to develop standards to measure tire manufacturing, its usage and impact.

Jarden also explained that tire production is rather challenging as tires contain over 100 raw materials. Despite the challenges, she said that the industry expects the global tire manufacturing to double by 2050, therefore, it was important to study how tires can affect the environment.

The TIP deals with many products; however, Jarden dubbed tire and road-wear particles the main concern of the project. At present, the researchers concluded that tire and road-wear particles have posed no substantial threat to human well-being and the environment. To provide qualitative findings, the initiative works in association with NGOs and consultations such as the Assurance Group that involves prominent scholars.

Jarden recalled one of the TIP’s achievements outlined in the 2017 report – it was highlighted that the firms that form the TIP managed to decrease the level of energy consumption and carbon emissions by around 2 percent on a yearly rate, as well as they succeeded in reducing water consumption by around 4 percent.

The project also seeks to have consistency in evaluations and wants the companies to be transparent, therefore, it is now funding the creation of a Product Category Rules (PCR) document – nothing similar to this has existed before in the industry. Tire producers are required to meet the criteria outlined in the PCR during procedures identifying what environmental impacts their products have for Environmental Product Declarations, and how they can be mitigated.

Commenting on scrap tires, Jarden explained that the TIP was seeking to examine the condition of management systems, recycling and recovery rates. The TIP is committed to finding innovations that would allow to reduce environmental hazard, therefore it is determined to keep on researching the issue to come up with the most effective strategies towards waste tire management . 

Earlier this year, the project started a global effort defining sustainability standards for the natural rubber supply chain.

The TIP plan created in 2005 is partly managed by Bridgestone, Goodyear and Michelin. Other big names, including Pirelli and Continental, are also involved in the initiative. In total, all the stakeholders represent over 60 percent of international tire producers who provide jobs for over 650,000 employees. To keep the project going, once in two years the CEOs meet in Geneva to hold talks.

Article by Tire Business